This paper considers the published decisions of the various courts and the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) on taxation matters during the calendar year 2018.
In preparing the paper I have identified 231 published decisions of Courts and Tribunals involving taxation law in the 2018 calendar year. Of these, 54 were AAT and Tribunal decisions, 15 were District, County or Federal Circuit Court decisions, 130 were first instance decisions in State Supreme Courts or the Federal Court of Australia, 29 were decisions of an intermediate Court of Appeal, either the Full Federal Court or a State or Territory Supreme Court, and three were decisions of the High Court of Australia.
The paper looks at the three decisions of the High Court of Australia, several decisions of the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia and various State intermediate Courts of Appeal, as well as a couple of first instance decisions of particular interest.
It is not intended that the paper provide a deep analysis of each of the decisions, but rather the approach is to identify the major decisions affecting taxation practice and give an overview of their topic so as to provide an easy reference for practitioners. A full list of all 231 identified cases is included at the end of the paper.
The High Court cases are all of great significance. A number of the other cases have been selected because of their practical application or interesting factual scenario and help to remind us that taxation law is ultimately about taxpayers’ circumstances and lives, as well as reminding us of the breadth of implications of seemingly straightforward transactions.