International and European Tax Law (Only 5 ECTS Credits)

Universidad Pompeu Fabra

Course Description

  • Course Name

    International and European Tax Law (Only 5 ECTS Credits)

  • Host University

    Universidad Pompeu Fabra

  • Location

    Barcelona, Spain

  • Area of Study

    Legal Studies

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    This course is only worth 5 ECTS credits, which typically transfers back as 2.5 US semester credits. Please confirm with an advisor at your home university that you will be able to receive credit for this course before requesting to enroll in it.


    In a globalized world, in which economic transactions are becoming increasingly international, the objective of this subject is to provide students with the foundations of international and European tax law. This will facilitate the understanding of current issues such as where and how should income from international transactions be taxed, the problems of double taxation and tax avoidance by multinational corporations or the latest initiatives against tax havens. Which criteria can use States to tax individuals or corporations doing business in different countries? Why do corporations such as Google or Apple pay so low taxes in many of the countries in which they operate? Are Andorra or Switzerland tax havens? How does a double tax treaty work? Which measures could prevent tax fraud? How does European Union law influence the national tax systems? How can the European Court of Justice protect us against discriminatory taxes? These are some of the questions that this subject will try to answer.

    This elective subject can be studied during the third term of the third or fourth years of the Law Degree. Previous knowledge of tax law is not required since the subject has an introductory nature and all the necessary elements to follow the classes will be provided to the students. Moreover, this subject is especially advisable for foreign students making an exchange at UPF or participating in study programs for foreign students given that it is based on an international, European and comparative approach. Therefore, previous knowledge of Spanish law is not necessary and the subject is also suitable for students who are not familiar with the legal systems of civil law countries (such as students coming from the United States and other common law countries). Reference to national legislation will
    follow a comparative approach, taking into account the case of Spain but also the situation in those countries which traditionally have been more influential in the field of international taxation, such as the United States.

    This subject is aimed at students interested in the role of taxation in international business transactions, in current topics such as the fight against tax havens or in understanding how taxes are coordinated within the European Union and in comparing this, for instance, with the situation in the United States. The subject will be useful for students willing to continue their law studies, especially if they want to focus on taxation in the future, as well as for those willing to start a career not only in taxation but also advising corporations and individuals on
    their international operations, or who may be interested in starting their own business or working for national or international public bodies dealing with tax matters. Beyond the legal aspects, this subject can also be useful for students interested in the economic and political dimension of international taxation.

Course Disclaimer

Please note that there are no beginning level Spanish courses offered in this program.

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.