Author(s) Vasco Nuno Coelho Martins Lima
Advisor(s) João Sérgio Ribeiro
Year 2012

Synopsis The purpose of this study is to analyze the jurisprudential configuration of the coherence principle on the national tax systems, as it was defined by the European Court of Justice, whilst a justified cause, in order to determine if this principle, characterized by its great ambiguity and imprecision, still configures a valid justification for a prejudicial or limited treatment. For this purpose, methodologically, we will proceed an analysis of the construction or reasoning carried out by the European Court of Justice behind the acceptance of the coherence as a essential interest and thus as overriding reason of public interest in the course of justifying a national infringement. In a second phase, we will carefully analyzing not only to a thorough analysis of the European Court of Justice jurisprudence, particularly in relation to the coherence principle of the national tax systems, but also to a clear delimitation using doctrinal positions in this subject, retrieving all contributions to a construction of this principle at an european level. We can conclude that for a correct perception, as well as a clear interpretation of the coherence principle of the national tax system, which is only viable through the analysis of the referred jurisprudence in an embracing way, in other words, considering all the European Court of Justice decisions and withdrawing, from each one of these jurisprudence guidelines, the elements which lead to the current weigh of the alluded principle. Which is relevant in is applicability, licit in our opinion, however in a strict way, in other words, provided that we establish a direct, personal and material connection between certain tax advantage and its posterior taxation, reflecting on its balanced compensating nature amongst two realities (the concession of the advantage and its taxation). Nevertheless we can´t forget the elements of the extensive conception, namely mutual and reciprocal respect between fundamental freedoms and national tax systems.

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