Erik M. Jensen


This article examines an influential set of articles, written by Professor John Tiley in the late 1980s, about anti-avoidance doctrines developed by US courts. The trilogy of articles was written for a British audience, as part of Tiley’s efforts to resist importation of US doctrines (“bleeding chunks of alien doctrine,” as he put it) into the UK, but his ideas remain relevant to tax theorists in all countries, including the US. The article also examines the work of the Aaronson Committee, of which Tiley was a member, which successfully recommended in 2011 that the UK adopt a general anti-avoidance rule (GAAR). Did Tiley’s resistance to anti-avoidance doctrines lessen over the decades, or did the recommendations of the Aaronson Committee avoid the problems that Tiley had seen in the US doctrines of the 1980s? The article concludes, not surprisingly, that the latter was largely the case.


Professor John Tiley, Anti-avoidance doctrines (U.S.), Substance over form doctrine, Business purpose doctrine, Step transaction doctrine, Taxation, Aaronson Committee

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eJournal of Tax Research

Publication Information

12 eJournal of Tax Research 74 (2014)


COinS Erik M. Jensen Faculty Bio