University of Miami School of Law CourseLink Course Description - Online System
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Spring 2020

Course Description
Tax is so pervasive that you risk malpractice if you skip it. Moreover, basic Federal Income Tax I is more an English than a math course. This course introduces the basic concepts of, and helps students learn to solve problems with, the federal tax code and regulations. Taxation of individuals is emphasized, although an overview of taxation of business entities is included. Subjects also include: whether, to whom, and when income is subject to taxation; capital recovery; business deductions; and capital gains. The course is not designed for students with a strong tax background, assumes no business or accounting knowledge, and has two fundamental purposes: first, to teach basic tax avoidance strategies; and second, to help students learn to use statutory materials to solve legal problems.

Course Schedule
Dates Day Time Room
01-13-2020 - 04-21-2020   TR  9:00 AM-10:50 AM F108

Course Frequency
This course is usually offered every semester

Course Information

Credits: 4
Pass/Fail Option: Yes
Grading: Graded
Method of Evaluation: Final examination, closed book using multistate-type questions. Grade curve generally adjusted to fit entering grade profile of class so students are neither advantaged nor disadvantaged by presence of other students.
Graduation Requirements Fulfilled By Course:
Special Attributes: None
Course Delivery:

Special Restrictions:
Law Track(s):
Business & Taxation - Basic
Entertainment, Music, & Sports - Related
Government & Regulation - Related
Bar Subject(s): None
Business Compliance and Sustainability (Area of Focus)   More information
Business Compliance and Sustainability (Concentration)   More information
The Business of Innovation, Law and Technology: BILT (Concentration)   More information
Social Justice & Public Interest (Area of Focus)   More information
Social Justice & Public Interest (Concentration)   More information
Course Book(s):
Textbook Required:
  • Textbook Name: CCH Federal Income Tax Code & Regulations Selected Sections
    Textbook Type: Paperback
    Requirement: Recommended
    Author: Dickinson
    Publisher: CCH-Wolters Kluwer
    Edition: 2019-2020
    ISBN: 9780808052180
  • Textbook Name: Fundamentals of Federal Income Taxation Cases & Materials
    Textbook Type: Hardcover
    Requirement: Required
    Author: Freeland, Lathrope and Stephen
    Publisher: Foundation Press
    Edition: 19th Edition
    ISBN: 9781640208520
  • Textbook Name: Federal Income Taxation: Concepts & Insights
    Textbook Type: Paperback
    Requirement: Recommended
    Author: Chirelstein
    Publisher: Foundation Press
    Edition: 14th Edition
    ISBN: 978164208247
First Class Assignment(s):
  • Assignment: Assignment for SECOND class session: please read Orientation, pp. 3-40 (skip Mayo).

    Required: FREELAND, FUNDAMENTALS OF FEDERAL INCOME TAXATION (latest ed.) (“text” or simply “T”) and access to the Internal Revenue Code and Regulations, which can be found online. (I will use CCH, FEDERAL INCOME TAX CODE & REGULATIONS--SELECTED SECTIONS (Dickinson, ed.) (latest ed.) (statutory supplement or simply “S”) in class and it will control the final examination.) While not optimal, recent editions of Freeland may also work and save you some money. The slide sets may be keyed to an earlier rather than the most recent edition, but I will use the most recent in class. I strongly recommend CHIRELSTEIN, FEDERAL INCOME TAXATION (latest ed.), by Foundation Press. You may want to peruse Chirelstein's contents (approx. ix-xiii) as an overview of the course. And while I am providing an overview in the first few class days, you will find it quite useful to read as much of Chirelstein as may be easy for you. You will need two course handouts available in the copy center: ... COURSE HANDOUT (WITH ATTACHMENTS including course syllabus) (“ho1”); and …POWERPOINT CLASS SLIDES (“ho2”).

    Additional Information:
    Important Notes: Class preparation, participation and daily (hourly) attendance are required. There are no “passes”; be prepared. (I am more lenient than usual in calling on students in our first meeting.) The ho2 PowerPoint slide-sets corresponding to each assigned chapter are good guides to our probable class discussion. I may lower your final grade or drop you from the course if you have more than eight hourly absences. I orient the (semi-) Socratic discussion with PowerPoint slides. If you don’t like slides, please respect your preferences (I do), and take another course. Examination by multistate-type questions (see ho1). If you have a disability, or suspect that you may have a disability, the Law School encourages you to contact the Office of Disability Services for information about available opportunities, resources, and services. You may also visit the Disability Services website at



Contact Information:
Phone: (305)284-2495
Office: G286