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Tax Law  Course Requirements for
Students Entering Fall 2013 or Later

To earn a Tax Law Certificate, a student must complete (1) earn at least 9 units of approved course work in the subject area ; (2) complete a practicum requirement related to tax law; and (3) complete an Upper Level Research and Writing Requirement analyzing an issue related to tax law.  

The course work must include Federal Income Taxation.  Any remaining units (to reach a minimum of 9) must be completed from the approved list of Tax Law Certificate elective courses.

Note: the curriculum below is subject to change and not all courses are offered every year.

Required Courses Units
Federal Income Taxation 3
Elective Courses Units
Corporate Taxation 3
Employee Benefits (ERISA) (LLM level course only) 3
Estate & Gift Taxation 3
Estate Planning - (LLM level course only) may count for EITHER course work OR the practicum requirement 3
Family Wealth Transfer Taxation 3
Federal Tax Accounting  & Tax Timing   2
Federal Tax of Property Dispositions 2
Federal Tax Procedure/Professional Responsibility 2
Foreign Taxation I 2
Foreign Taxation II 2
Income Tax of Trusts & Estates 2
International Taxation 2 or 3
Nonprofit Taxation 2
Partnership Taxation 3
State & Local Taxation      2 or 3
Tax Fraud, Crimes & Investigation 2

Practicum Requirement

To earn the certificate, a student must participate in an experiential learning activity that is focused on tax law.  Students may fulfill this practicum requirement in the following ways:
1) completion of a three unit (minimum) externship relevant to tax law;
2) completion of 141 hours of paid work relevant to tax law; or
3) completion of a simulation or professional skills class designated as "Tax Prac" on the course schedule. 

Writing Requirement

To earn the certificate, a student must complete a substantial research paper analyzing an issue relevant to tax law. The paper must demonstrate the ability to identify, describe, and analyze the subject matter, and, should, where possible, propose a resolution. The paper must meet the standards for an Upper Level Research and Writing Requirement project and may be used to satisfy that requirement and/or the requirements of a course taken for credit. A writing requirement enrollment form must be submitted to the Registrar's Office by the last day to add classes for the term during which the project will be undertaken.

Scholastic Requirements

Tax Law Certificate recipients must achieve a grade of C+ or higher in each course applied to meet the requirements for the certificate and achieve a cumulative grade point average of 2.700 or higher for all courses applied to the certificate.

A student achieving a cumulative grade point average of 3.500 or higher for all courses applied to meet the requirements of the certificate is awarded the certificate with honors.

All course work for the certificate must be taken for a letter grade except for any approved elective course in which credit/no credit grading is mandatory. For any course in which a letter grade is not provided, a "credit" must be achieved in order for the course to be applied to meet the certificate requirements

Transfer Units

All course work must be taken at USF with the exception of one course (for a maximum of three units of credit). If a student wishes to apply a course taken at another law school to meet the requirements of the Tax Law Certificate, prior approval must be obtained by the assistant dean for academic services. The student must take the course for a letter grade and earn a grade of C+ or higher for credit to be applied to the Tax Law Certificate.

A course taken at another law school will be transferred as "credit" only for purposes of determining the Tax Law Certificate grade point average as well as for calculating the USF semester and cumulative grade point averages.

Applying for the Certificate

To be eligible to receive a Tax Law Certificate, a student must submit an application to the USF School of Law Office of the Registrar. Applications are due the student's second-to-last semester. Applications must be submitted on or before the last day to drop classes in that semester.

Students may obtain only one certificate. No student will be awarded more than one certificate upon completion of the JD degree, even if such student completed the requirements to more than one certificate program.

It is each student's responsibility to ensure that all requirements for the Tax Law Certificate are satisfied in a timely manner.