“Dearly Beloved we are gathered here today to get through this thing we call ‘Life.'” Prince 1958 – 2016. I am delighted to join this exceptional tribe of talented law professors presently known as The Surly Subgroup. My day job is at the William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas as a William S. Boyd Professor of Law teaching tax law, accounting and finance courses. I also get to research, write and publish about and advocate for “access to tax justice.”
In a nutshell, this means detailing, analyzing, de/reconstructing tax laws and systems that provide relief from the many hardships that “this thing we call life” imposes on millions and millions of taxpayers. These hardships include poverty, especially childhood poverty, disasters, disabilities, vulnerable immigration status, retirement, and complex, inaccessible and expensive workfare subsidies, and most recently lack of affordable health care. Because America has replaced meaningful welfare programs with workfare delivered through the income tax system, tax law has become a subset of poverty law. As such, I am currently working with poverty law measures and demographics to tease out how our economy disproportionately allocates resources based upon race, gender, age, and other characteristics. Perhaps my most rewarding experiences have been on the front lines of tax justice working directly with taxpayers on a pro bono basis to educate, inform, advise, and help them navigate the delivery and retention of life changing tax refunds through tax compliance, controversies, and legislative changes. I brainstorm and advocate with a national group of tax justice passion warriors who work day in and day out at more than 100 Low Income Taxpayer Clinics throughout America. I hope to share my critical thinking about these issues and more with you soon. But “life is just a party and parties weren’t meant to last,” so hasta luego friends.