Fragile and Strong: The Oxymoron of Tax Administration and Constitutionality in New Zealand


  • Shelley Griffiths University of Otago
  • James Hartshorn University of Otago


political constitution, tax system, tax principles, Common Law System, constitutional jurisprudence


It is usually argued that in New Zealand there is no constitution, however, the political constitution of a state is related to who or what institutions should exercise power and how they should exercise it and, in this sense, the previous statement would not be correct since these rules exist . In the case of this country, the study of constitutional norms is different than the Civil Law System countries, and its sources must be studied in a different way, which the author explains in this work. The three basic pillars of the constitutional system would be the sovereignty of parliament, the idea of limited government and the separation of powers, and the rule of law. From these and other considerations, the author focuses on the study of the influence of the Constitution on the tax system, at the legislative and administrative level, in various aspects, including the rights of taxpayers.

Author Biographies

Shelley Griffiths, University of Otago

Dean, Faculty of Law University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. Prof. Griffiths currently teaches Taxation (including a paper on advanced issues in Taxation), Company Law and the Securities Market Regulation.


James Hartshorn, University of Otago

Faculty of Law University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. Awared with Best 300-level Student in Politics in 2020.



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How to Cite

Griffiths, S., & Hartshorn, J. . (2023). Fragile and Strong: The Oxymoron of Tax Administration and Constitutionality in New Zealand. Review of International and European Economic Law, 2(3). Retrieved from