February 27, 2020

Law Student Tax Challenge

The J.D. Winners of the 19th Annual Law Student Tax Challenge receive their award from Section Chair Thomas J. Callahan at the 2020 Midyear Meeting

The J.D. Winners of the 19th Annual Law Student Tax Challenge receive their award from Section Chair Thomas J. Callahan at the 2020 Midyear Meeting

Robb Cohen Photography & Video

Winners of the 19th Annual Law Student Tax Challenge

The Section is pleased to announce the winners of the 19th Annual Law Student Tax Challenge, a contest designed to give students an opportunity to research, write about, and present their analyses of a real-life tax planning problem. The competition is open to both J.D. and LL.M. law students. Amanda Krugler and Scott Sullivan of the University of Kentucky College of Law were awarded first place in the J.D. Division. Their coach was Jennifer Bird-Pollan. Jennifer Breton and Joshua Runyan of Temple University Beasley School of Law were awarded first place in the LL.M. Division. Their coach was Andrew Weiner. The teams presented oral arguments before a panel of distinguished tax lawyers and tax court judges attending the Section of Taxation 2020 Midyear Tax Meeting in Boca Raton, FL, with the winners honored at an awards ceremony and reception during the meeting.

J.D. Division Results

  • 1st Place: Amanda Krugler and Scott Sullivan, University of Kentucky College of Law
  • 2nd Place teams (Tie): Matthew Foran and Harry Gao, Seton Hall Law School; Brian Krastev and Matthew Marcellino, Syracuse University College of Law
  • Best Written Submission: Ryan Hartnett and Mitchell Renfrew, Western New England University School of Law

The J.D. Semi-Finalists were:

  • Anita Alanko and Jennifer Galstad, Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law
  • Mark Watterson and Taylor Monroe, UNT Dallas College of Law
  • Ryan Hartnett and Mitchell Renfrew, Western New England University School of Law

LL.M. Division Results

  • 1st Place: Jennifer Breton and Joshua Runyan, Temple University Beasley School of Law
  • 2nd Place: Kathleen Arsenault and Douglas Schmidt, University of Denver Sturm College of Law
  • Best Written Submission: Kathleen Arsenault and Douglas Schmidt, University of Denver Sturm College of Law

The LL.M. Semi-Finalists were:

  • Arash Zainaleain and Zhiyao Li, Boston University
  • Justin Rayome and Cai Xu, Georgetown University Law Center
LL.M. Team #
LL.M. Team #
The LL.M. Winners of the 19th Annual Law Student Tax Challenge receive their award from Section Chair Thomas J. Callahan at the 2020 Midyear Meeting.

The LL.M. Winners of the 19th Annual Law Student Tax Challenge receive their award from Section Chair Thomas J. Callahan at the 2020 Midyear Meeting.

Robb Cohen Photography & Video

How Does the Challenge Work?

An alternative to traditional moot court competitions, the Law Student Tax Challenge (LSTC) is organized by the Section’s Young Lawyers Form. The LSTC asks two-person teams of students to solve a complex business problem that might arise in everyday tax practice. Teams are initially evaluated on two criteria: a memorandum to a senior partner and a letter to a client explaining the result. Based on the written work product, six teams from the J.D. Division and four teams from the LL.M. Division receive a free trip to the Section’s Midyear Meeting, where each team presents its submission before a panel of judges consisting of the country’s top tax practitioners and government officials, including tax court judges. The competition is a great way for law students to showcase their knowledge in a real-world setting and gain valuable exposure to the tax law community.

19th LSTC Final Round Videos

Highlights from the winners of the J.D. and LL.M. divisions of the 19th Law Student Tax Challenge. This year's J.D. Winners are Amanda Krugler and Scott Sullivan of the University of Kentucky College of Law and this year's LL.M. Winners are Jennifer Breton and Joshua Runyan of Temple University Beasley School of Law.

LSTC Archive

We have created an archive of previous Law Student Tax Challenge problems, best written winners, results, and more. 

LSTC on Tax Connect

Join the Young Lawyers Community on Tax Connect to learn more about the Law Student Tax Challenge.  Competition updates will be communicated here.

What is Tax Connect?

Tax Connect is an online and email platform for networking, exchanging ideas, getting advice, and interacting with fellow lawyers, law students, and legal professionals with whom you share similar areas of interest. 

For questions about Tax Connect, contact the Section's Technology Manager Dan Swenson. For all questions related to the LSTC or the Section of Taxation, please contact taxlserve@americanbar.org.