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For anyone considering the pursuit of a general Tax Law LL.M, my posts may only be marginally helpful. I knew with my background that I wanted to broaden my scope with an “International” LL.M, and that I am in love with tax law. An International Tax Law LL.M was therefore a logical choice for me, and my posts are focused specifically on that degree. There are only a few programs of this kind in the world and you can list the well known ones on your two hands:
- United States: NYU, Georgetwon, Florida
- UK: University of London colleges including: King’s College, Queen Mary, London School of Economics. Cambridge and Oxford both have eminent tax professors (Professor Tiley and Freedman respectively), but they are not known for their masters program in tax.
- Europe: the International Tax Center at Leiden University, Vienna, and several in Germany.
Having applied to and received offers from the University of London, as well as Leiden, I had to make a tough decision. I chose Leiden primarily for the fact that it is the preeminent program of its kind in International Tax. By that I mean that the program is truly Internationally Focused (as opposed to domestically focused with one or two modules in International Tax). Vienna and Leiden are are quite unique in this way.
The other reasons for Leiden were more personal. Firstly it is taught all week round (unlike Vienna), and was in a new country (I had already experienced London). I saw it as a chance to submerge myself in a new culture, a new place, and get a world renown education. Of course, this could be said of other courses listed above, but the comments of several tax professors all had a similar message. Essentially that you can’t go wrong with Leiden.
If you are hoping to take an easy LL.M that will allow you to mostly enjoy a new part of the world while studying, then the International Tax Center at Leiden would not be for you. Class begins officially on monday (two days form now), but there is already 12 hours of reading to do. I will follow up with some other facts about the University and the Course soon, but for now this post just needs a photo. I have chosen the Kamerlingh Onnes Building which is the very beautiful dedicated law library. See the feature image!