Project on the Impact of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union on Direct and Indirect Taxation

European Tax LawThe Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (hereinafter the “Charter”) is relatively new as it entered into force in connection with the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty on 1 December 2009. With effect from that date the Charter became legally binding with the same legal value as the Treaties themselves pursuant to Article 6(1) in the Treaty on the European Union (TEU).

Recently, there has been an increased focus on the impact of the Charter in tax-related matters at various seminars and conferences in Europe i.a. Vienna, Lund and Copenhagen, following the increased number of cases related to direct and indirect taxation coming before the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). Just to mention a few cases where the Charter either played a very important role for the reasoning of the CJEU or was the pivotal point for discussions: e.g. Case C-617/10 Åkerberg Fransson, Case C-69/14 Dragoș Constantin Târșia, Case C-419/14 WebMindLicenses, Case C-543/14 Ordre des barreaux francophones et germanophone and Case C-122/15 C.

Currently, little academic research has been performed in the combined areas of EU fundamental rights and direct and indirect taxation. Thus, the larger principles and perspectives as well as the specific and concrete consequences of the impact of the Charter, and also the European Convention on Human Rights, on direct and indirect taxation are yet to be revealed and exposed to deeper scientific scrutiny.

This research area could for example give rise to the following interesting research projects or a combination hereof:

  • Constitutional issues in regard to the interaction between EU law, constitutional law, national tax law and human rights law, including the interaction between the Charter and the European Convention on Human Rights
  • Direct tax issues in connection with the scope and application of the Charter on direct tax areas which are mainly nationally regulated, but may be EU-regulated on certain areas
  • Correspondingly, indirect tax issues in connection with the scope and application of the Charter on indirect tax areas which are either EU-regulated or nationally regulated
  • Tax issues in relation to differences and similarities between the impact of the Charter respectively on direct tax law and indirect tax law. This project would be closely connected to another FIRE-project on the interaction between VAT law and income tax law
  • EU law issues e.g. regarding the fiscal sovereignty of the EU Member States related to areas within direct and indirect taxation which lie within the scope of the Charter
  • Human rights and fundamental rights issues in tax law such as direct effect, enforceability, application by the courts and the tax authorities, distinction between rights, freedoms and principles etc.

Assistant Professor and postdoc. Karina Kim Egholm Elgaard