Researchers at UCD


Emer Hunt

Lecturer/Assistant Professor

School Of Law
Sutherland School of Law
Dublin 4

Tel: +353 1 7164148


Emer lectures in Irish and international law, legal ethics and legal practice at UCD's School of Law degree programmes to undergraduate and postgraduate students.  

Emer graduated from Trinity College Dublin in 1990, with an honours degree in law, and holds a Master's degree in law from the London School of Economics and Political Science. She qualified as a solicitor in England & Wales, and in Ireland and during her training worked as a stagiare with the European Commission in Brussels.  She is also a Chartered Tax Adviser.  

Emer has worked as a tax lawyer with leading law firms in London, New York and Dublin and was a partner in the tax department of one of Ireland's leading commercial law firms. 

She is interested in international tax law and the direct tax competence of the European Union.  She is also interested in residence and domicile, as they have an effect on the location of companies.
  Emer is studying for a PhD, in the Smurfit Graduate School of Business, which involves research on the impact of state aid laws on domestic tax rulings given to international companies.  She is employing the theoretical lens of systems theory, as developed by Niklas Luhmann, to examine the process of constructing tax rulings as an issue of state aid. 




Association: Chartered Institute of Taxation, Function/Role: Examiner: Advanced Diploma in International Taxation
Association: Trinity College Dublin , Function/Role: External examiner

Conference Contributions

Emer Hunt (2018) A systems-theoretical approach to a triangular interest in tax rulings: member state, MNE and European Commission. [Invited Oral Presentation], Ways of Knowing: Epistemology and Law, IALS London , 31-MAY-18 - 31-MAY-18.
Emer Hunt (2018) The application of state aid law to tax rulings. [Chaired Session], Irish Centre for European Law Competition Law Conference, Dublin , 20-APR-18 - 20-APR-18.
Emer Hunt (2017) A systems theoretical approach to the state aid action of the European Commision against Ireland, relating to Apple. [Invited Lecture], Development of Professions: Observed with Luhmann's social systems theory, Dubrovnik, Croatia , 20-SEP-17 - 22-SEP-17.
Emer Hunt (2017) An examination of the state aid action against member states in relation to tax rulings: using the Ireland/Apple as a case study. [Invited Lecture], Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference: The Diverse Unities of Law, Dublin, Ireland , 05-SEP-17 - 08-SEP-17.
Emer Hunt (2017) Research and development tax incentives in Ireland: an overview. [Invited Oral Presentation], Ireland and the Apple Decision, Trinity College Dublin , 14-JUN-17 - 14-JUN-17.
Emer Hunt (2015) Presentation on Ireland's involvement in tax treaty disputes and discussant on Singapore's involvement in tax treaty disputes. [Invited Oral Presentation], G20 Conference on the Global Analysis of Tax Treaty Disputes, London School of Economics and Political Science , 30-OCT-15 - 31-OCT-15.
Emer Hunt (2015) On the parliamentary agenda: international tax avoidance by multinationals?. Tax Research Network Annual Conference, Hull, United Kingdom , 09-SEP-15 - 10-SEP-15.
Emer Hunt (2014) Current problems with a legal education. WG Hart Workshop on Legal Education, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London , 23-JUN-15 - 24-JUN-15.
Emer Hunt (2012) Ireland's experience of a GAAR. A GAAR for the UK? Building on overseas experience, Said Business School, University of Oxford , 10-FEB-12 - 10-APR-12.


Employer: Slaughter and May
Position: Lawyer
Employer: Allen & Overy
Position: Lawyer
Employer: Matheson
Position: Partner and consultant


Year 1996 Institution: London School of Economics & Political Science, UK
Qualification: LLM Subject:
Year 1994 Institution: Trinity College Dublin
Qualification: LLB Subject:
Year 1994 Institution: Institute of Taxation
Qualification: AITI Subject: Association of the Institute of Taxation
Year 1994 Institution: Inc Law Society of Ireland
Qualification: Solicitor Subject:

Other Activities

Emer is a qualified solicitor in Ireland, and in England and Wales.  She is an Associate of the Institute of Taxation.  


Emer acted as an external examiner to Trinity College Dublin, and has also acted as an examiner for the Chartered Institute of Taxation in the United Kingdom.


She has lectured at the International Bar Association and the American Bar Association.



Book Chapters

Doyle, G., & Hunt E. (2016) 'Ireland' In: Michael Lang, Jeffrey Owens, Pasquale Pistone, Alexander Rust, Josef Schuch, Claus Staringer (eds). General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAARs) - A key Element of Tax Systems in the Post-BEPS Tax World?. Amsterdam: IBFD Publishers. , pp.345-365 [Details]
Emer Hunt (2016) 'Tax Treaty Disputes in Ireland' In: Eduardo Baistrocchi (eds). A Global Analysis of Tax Treaty Disputes. UK: Cambridge University Press. [Details]

Peer Reviewed Journals

Emer Hunt (2005) 'Section 48 of the Finance Act 2005: The Interaction Between Corporation Tax and Accounting Standards'. Irish Jurist, . [Details]

Other Journals

Emer Hunt (2003) 'Debunking Derivatives ¿ legally speaking' Tax Journal . [Details]
Emer Hunt (2004) 'Finance Leasing ¿ A Snapshot' Tax Journal . [Details]
Emer Hunt (2004) 'Securitisation ¿ Creating Securities' Tax Journal . [Details]

Conference Publications

Doyle, G., and Hunt, E. (2014) General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAARs) - A Key Element of Tax Systems in the Post-BEPS Tax World? Ireland's GAAR and Recent EU Developments Vienna University of Economics and Business, Institute for Austrian and International Tax Law , 03-JUL-14 - 05-JUL-14 [Details]

Published Reports

Ramboll Management Consulting and Corin Advisory, Emer Hunt (2016) Taxation paper No 61: Study on Structures of Aggressive Tax Planning and Indicators. Final report. European Commission, Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 2016. [Details]
Doyle, G. & Hunt, E. (2014) General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAARs) A Key Element of Tax Systems in the Post-BEPS Tax World?, A National Report on Ireland. Institute for Austrian and International Tax Law, Vienna. [Details]


Research Interests

I am interested in the international tax system, and the response of both states and multinational enterprises to the issues of globalisation and the mobility of capital.  Ireland is an important component of the international tax architecture, and needs to balance its sovereignty in the area of tax with a responsiveness to international pressures.  



Teaching Philosophy

I teach in the area of tax law and legal ethics. At undergraduate level, I teach modules on domestic tax law and on legal ethics and legal practice, and at postgraduate level, I teach international tax law.

Modules Coordinated

201700   LAW41450     Law: International Tax Law
201700   LAW30700     Law: Lawyers,Ethics &Legal Practice
201700   SBUS42260     Business: Corporate Dynamics
201700   LAW30090     Law: Revenue Law: Introduction

Enhancement of Teaching

The interesting thing about tax law is its ever responsive nature to societal pressures and, sometimes contradictory, objectives. At undergraduate level, I try to connect the domestic Irish tax system to the latent philosophical choices which inform the legislation and, indeed, the caselaw. This approach also feeds into my teaching on legal ethics and legal practice, where student participation is vital to explore the pressures faced by lawyers in reconciling the duties they owe to clients, courts and society in general. This participation is formally achieved through collaborative groups of students presenting assignments, and informally achieved through class discussion and ad hoc role play.

Review and Enhancement of Curriculum

Tax law My philosophy is to facilitate a reasoned discussion in class about the principles and philosophy of tax law, as evidenced by an analysis of the legislative and political constraints in which the tax system operates. We frequently look at topical issues in tax law, of which there are always many, as examplars of these legislative and political constraints. I also tend to read legislation in detail as this is an essential skill of a tax lawyer. Research skills are also of vital importance in tax law, and the assessment methodologies reflect this approach, as I tend to favour written assignments over end-of-semester exams. Legal ethics and legal practice My philosophy towards teaching legal ethics and legal practice is to draw deeply on my years in professional practice in Dublin, London and New York. Again, the aim is to achieve an interactive discussion, based on readings which must be done prior to class. We look at issues such as legal training and the process of producing a reflective lawyer through professional socialisation, what it means to be a lawyer, the regulation of the legal profession, conflicts of interest between lawyers and their actual or potential clients, tensions between the lawyer's obligations to her clients and her overarching responsibility to the administration of justice through the court system. These issues are examined in an empirical setting, taking case law and codes of conduct as guide to contextualising the lawyer's ethical obligations in the 21 century.

Developing as a Teacher

I actively encourage students to give feedback on the modules I teach and the rates of response are generally very high. This anonymous feedback is enormously important to my teaching methodology, as it forces a self-evaluation of teaching practices on an annual basis.

Innovation & Leadership