The Influence of Historical Tax Law Developments on Anglo-American Law and Politics

Columbia Tax Law Journal, vol. 5, p. 40, 2013

29 Pages Posted: 18 Feb 2014  

Arthur J. Cockfield

Queen's University - Faculty of Law

Jonah Mayles

Torkin Manes LLP.

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

This article highlights the influence of historical Anglo-American tax law developments on the formation of new political institutions and laws. In critical periods of English and U.S. history, individuals rebelled against arbitrary royal taxes. In turn, they demanded new tax laws that became embedded in documents from the Magna Carta to the English Bill of Rights to the Declaration of Independence that promoted democratic constraints on the use of state power to assess and collect taxes. Over time, the idea that individuals are entitled to equal treatment under the law, and possess inalienable human rights, emerged in part as a result of these tax law developments. The discussion in this article supports the view that pragmatic concerns over property and taxation drove important English and American political and legal reforms.

Keywords: Tax law, tax history, politics, Magna Carta, English Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence

JEL Classification: B15, F30, H20, K34, N10, P50

Suggested Citation

Cockfield, Arthur J. and Mayles, Jonah, The Influence of Historical Tax Law Developments on Anglo-American Law and Politics (2013). Columbia Tax Law Journal, vol. 5, p. 40, 2013. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2397399

Arthur Cockfield (Contact Author)

Queen's University - Faculty of Law ( email )

Macdonald Hall
Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6 K7L3N6
Canada

Jonah Mayles

Torkin Manes LLP.

151 Yonge Street
Suite 1500
Toronto, Ontario M5C 2W7
Canada

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