Skip to Main Content

Law360 Quotes Peter Barnes on New International Tax System

July 17, 2019, Law360 Tax Authority

As the 2017 tax overhaul inches further toward complete implementation and the world's powers debate a new international tax system, the global tax picture could look substantially different by the end of 2019.

. . .

"It's only when you really get your hands on the numbers, and the impact of the provisions on all of your foreign income, your foreign operations, that you can understand what the bill will do," said Peter Barnes, a professor of tax at Duke University School of Law and a former international tax counsel at General Electric Co. [Mr. Barnes is also Of Counsel to Caplin & Drysdale.] "At this point, we've got most of the guidance from most of the provisions, so the real challenge is looking at them against your facts."

. . .

Barnes said immediate changes are unlikely, but companies are going to get a better sense of what specific problems, or opportunities, the new international landscape presents.

"It's going to be a very strong indicator of what companies need to be thinking about in terms of ownership of their IP, merging companies, acquiring new companies - because they now understand what their foreign effective tax rates are," he said. "Doing that sort of thinking and planning in the abstract is impossible."

 . . .

Barnes noted that an OECD proposal likely would need to satisfy all parties while also raising as much revenue as those national taxes.

"It's going to be hard for a country to switch to a global proposal if the global proposal raises less revenue than their interim measure," he said.

U.S. companies hit by the digital service taxes are likely to pass the cost onto the customers in those jurisdictions, Barnes said.

"Countries think this is a free lunch, that they're going to be collecting revenue from American tech companies," he said. "I think, in a lot of cases, the economic burden is going to fall on their own consumers."

For the full article, please visit Law360’s website (subscription required).

Excerpt taken from the article “US International Tax Policy To Watch In The 2nd Half Of 2019” by Alex Parker for Law360 Tax Authority.


About Caplin & Drysdale
Celebrating our 55th Anniversary in 2019, Caplin & Drysdale continues to be a leading provider of legal services to corporations, individuals, and nonprofits throughout the United States and around the world. We are also privileged to serve as legal advisors to accounting firms, financial institutions, law firms, and other professional services organizations.

The firm's reputation over the years has earned us the trust and respect of clients, industry peers, and government agencies. Moreover, clients rely on our broad knowledge of the law and our keen insights into their business concerns and personal interests. Our lawyers' strong tactical and problem-solving skills -- combined with substantial experience handling a variety of complex, high stakes, matters in a boutique environment -- make us one the nation's most distinctive law firms.

With offices in New York City and Washington, D.C., Caplin & Drysdale's core practice areas include:
For more information, please visit us at
Washington, DC Office:
One Thomas Circle NW
Suite 1100
Washington, DC 20005
New York, NY Office:
295 Madison Avenue
12th Floor
New York, NY 10017


This communication does not provide legal advice, nor does it create an attorney-client relationship with you or any other reader. If you require legal guidance in any specific situation, you should engage a qualified lawyer for that purpose. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Attorney Advertising
It is possible that under the laws, rules, or regulations of certain jurisdictions, this may be construed as an advertisement or solicitation.
©2021 Caplin & Drysdale, Chartered
All Rights Reserved.

Related Professionals

Related Practice Area(s)