Tax Arbitration and Its Issues: From Fiction to Reality to Surrealism

Spain Arbitration Review, No. 21, 2014

152 Pages Posted: 17 Feb 2016

Date Written: December 1, 2014


"Tax" and "arbitration" are two seemingly unrelated terms. Yet recent efforts, first by the OECD, and then by the United States and other countries to introduce arbitration clauses in their Tax Treaties require to reconsider the association. Alas, rather than rejoicing by the presence of a new member of the "arbitration club" the contents of the solutions envisaged in those Treaties command caution. Wanting the best of both worlds, States have tried to take the benefits of arbitration without giving away the control that it needs to work properly. The series of middle-of-the-road solutions envisaged in the Treaties not only raises suspicion about the practical functioning of the mechanism itself. They also pose fundamental questions about what can be called "arbitration", how is it supposed to work, and whether the hybrid tax arbitration can ultimately improve expediency, while preserving accountability.

Keywords: Arbitration, tax, fiscal, regulatory, administration, authorities, tax treaties, OECD, competence-competence, fundamental rights, access to justice, baseball, recognition and enforcement

JEL Classification: K12, K23, K33, K34

Suggested Citation

Ramos Muñoz, David, Tax Arbitration and Its Issues: From Fiction to Reality to Surrealism (December 1, 2014). Spain Arbitration Review, No. 21, 2014. Available at SSRN:

David Ramos Muñoz (Contact Author)

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid ( email )

126, Getafe
Madrid, 28903


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