Sport and Taxation

Subject LAWS70332 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 7 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2015.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: The total class time is between 24 and 26 hours.
Total Time Commitment:

The pre-teaching period commences four weeks before the subject commencement date. From this time, students are expected to access and review the Reading Guide that will be available from the LMS subject page and the subject materials provided by the subject coordinator, which will be available from Melbourne Law School. Refer to the Reading Guide for confirmation of which resources need to be read and what other preparation is required before the teaching period commences.

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge:

Applicants without legal qualifications should note that subjects are offered in the discipline of law at an advanced graduate level. While every effort will be made to meet the needs of students trained in other fields, concessions will not be made in the general level of instruction or assessment. Most subjects assume the knowledge usually acquired in a degree in law (LLB, JD or equivalent). Applicants should note that admission to some subjects in the Melbourne Law Masters will be dependent upon the individual applicant’s educational background and professional experience.

Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

The Melbourne Law Masters welcomes applications from students with disabilities. The inherent academic requirements for study in the Melbourne Law Masters are:

  • The ability to attend a minimum of 75% of classes and actively engage in the analysis and critique of complex materials and debate;
  • The ability to read, analyse and comprehend complex written legal materials and complex interdisciplinary materials;
  • The ability to clearly and independently communicate in writing a knowledge and application of legal principles and interdisciplinary materials and to critically evaluate these;
  • The ability to clearly and independently communicate orally a knowledge and application of legal principles and interdisciplinary materials and critically evaluate these;
  • The ability to work independently and as a part of a group;
  • The ability to present orally and in writing legal analysis to a professional standard.

Students who feel their disability will inhibit them from meeting these inherent academic requirements are encouraged to contact the Disability Liaison Unit:


For more information:

Phone: +61 3 8344 6190

Subject Overview:

Highly paid international athletes continually attract the attention of tax authorities and the media with regard to the way that they structure their finances. Similarly, sporting organisations and clubs are also subject to continuous scrutiny with regard to their finances and tax affairs.

The international nature of sport provides a wealth of opportunities for tax planning and also for pitfalls when it comes to tax compliance. Keeping your affairs in order when you are a globe-trotting sportsperson in a multitude of countries is not easy, and many athletes and sporting organisations rely heavily on expert advisers.

This subject is for sportspeople, sports agents, sports administrators and other sporting advisers to expand their knowledge of how to manage their or their client’s tax affairs. The subject should enable students to better identify tax issues and tax opportunities with regard to sporting income and sporting-related financial arrangements.

While the subject has a focus on sporting-related income, it also provides a broad introduction to individual international tax and double tax treaties.

Principal topics will include:

  • Income tax aspects of income from sport activities:
    • Amateur versus professional
    • Special tax regimes for athletes
    • Individual sports
    • Team sports
  • Income tax aspects of other income related to sports activities:
    • Publicity on clothing
    • Use of products
    • Sponsorships
    • Subsidies and grants
    • Inducement payments
    • Athlete’s image rights
    • Merchandising
  • Income tax aspects of sports clubs and associations
  • Taxation of sports events
  • Foreign income derived by resident athletes
  • Taxation of non-resident athletes deriving Australian source income
  • Tax planning aspects for athletes.
Learning Outcomes:

A student who has successfully completed this subject should have an understanding of:

  • The tax issues that arise for athletes as a result of their sporting activities and as a result of their other activities
  • The tax issues that arise for those who make payments to athletes, including as employees and also general withholding obligations
  • The international tax issues that arise as a result of sporting activities
  • The capacity for tax planning by athletes.

Assignment (30%)

Take-home examination (70%)
10,000 word research paper (100%) on a topic approved by the subject coordinator

Prescribed Texts:

Core subject materials will be provided free of charge to all students. Some subjects require further texts to be purchased. Details regarding any prescribed texts will be provided prior to the commencement of the subject.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Links to further information:

This subject has a quota of 30 students. Please refer to the website for further information about the management of subject quotas and waitlists.

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