Tax Law

The Area of Concentration in Tax Law is intended to provide students with a solid foundation in tax law that can be used either to enter a career in tax law, as a basis for pursuing further study in tax law, or as an adjunct to a career in another area of law. Tax law is unique in that it intersects with every area of the law—from energy and environmental law to corporate law to health law to personal injury law, to name a few examples. Knowledge of tax law is thus vital whether one wishes to specialize in tax law or whether one wishes to gain a more profound knowledge of tax law to improve skills in another area of law (e.g., in advising corporations, partnerships, and other businesses).

Students may pursue this concentration by taking a foundational course in tax law, six elective credits, and three skills-based courses.

By completing these courses, it is expected that students enrolled in the concentration will learn and understand the substantive and procedural law in the area of federal tax law and will acquire the ability to apply subject-matter expertise in the area of federal tax law in experiential settings (e.g., clinics and externships or through classroom simulations) that will benefit them as they enter a career in the tax field or in another field in which knowledge of tax law is important.

Program Requirements

The Tax Law Area of Concentration requires a minimum of 13 credits. The program requirements are divided into foundational, elective, and skills. Students must take a foundational course in tax law, 6 credits from among the listed elective courses, and 3 credits from among the listed skills courses.

Foundational Course (Required)

  • Federal Income Tax (4 credits)

Elective Courses (6 credits required)

  • Corporate Tax (3 credits)
  • Critical Tax Theory Seminar (2 credits)
  • Partnership Tax (3 credits)
  • Employee Benefits (3 credits)
  • Estate & Gift Tax (3 credits)
  • Estate Planning (2 credits)
  • Introduction to Accounting for Lawyers (1 credit)
  • International Tax (3 credits)
  • Federal Tax Practice & Procedure (2 credits)
  • Nonprofit Tax-Exempt Organizations (2 credits)
  • State & Local Tax (2 credits)
  • Tax Policy Seminar (3 credits)
  • Law Intersession: Tax Practice & Procedure (1 credit)
  • Pittsburgh Tax Review (1 credit)

Skills Component (3 credits required)

  • Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic (3 credits)
  • International Tax (3 credits)
  • Tax Law Moot Court Competition (1 credit)
  • Externship in the area of tax law (4 credits)
  • Semester in D.C. externship in the area of tax law (10 credits)
  • Tax Controversy Practice (3 credits)