Memphis Law is proud to offer a Certificate in Tax for our students. Tax law affects and influences nearly every aspect of our lives, from sales tax, income tax, property tax, charitable deductions, tax credits and inheritance tax just to name a few areas. Students studying tax law will be able to apply their knowledge not only to their work but also to their daily decisions.

In studying the Internal Revenue Service Code, students in the Certificate in Tax program develop and strengthen their critical thinking skills. Knowledge of the code is essential not only for tax practitioners, but also for attorneys practicing in various fields such as labor and employment, family law, insurance, social security, workers compensation, and corporate litigation.

For more information about the Certificate in Tax program, please contact Prof. William P. Kratzke at wkratzke@memphis.edu or (901) 678-3221.

Course Requirements

Basic Income Tax (3) *
Corporate Tax (3)
Partnership Tax (3)

* Must take Income Tax in the fall 2L of year.

Minimum 6 hours from the following list:

Estate & Gift Tax (2)
Nonprofit Organizations (3)
International Taxation (3)
Tax Seminar (2)
Estate Planning (2)
Mergers & Acquisitions (2)
Tax Lawyering (2)

Non-class requirements

Students seeking the Certificate in Tax must also complete 25 hours of VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) clinic work. These 25 hours can be counted toward the pro bono hours that the law school requires for graduation.

Grade point requirement

To satisfy the requirements of the Certificate in Tax, students must demonstrate a successful understanding of the fundamentals of taxation by obtaining an overall GPA of at least 3.0 for Certificate classes and a minimum Overall GPA of 2.5.


Students seeking a Certificate in Tax are strongly encouraged to participate in the Law Student Tax Challenge, sponsored by the American Bar Association Section of Taxation.

Learning Outcomes

To earn the Tax Law Certificate, a student must earn 15 credit hours at above-normal levels of performance in tax courses that include Basic Income Tax, Corporate Taxation, and Partnership Taxation with a view towards developing the capacity to –

  1. Identify the range of fundamental U.S. federal income taxation issues applicable to individuals and juridical entities.
  2. Read carefully the Internal Revenue Code and Regulations.
  3. Identify a range of policies reflected in the Internal Revenue Code.
  4. Demonstrate through pro bono activity or clinical experience sensitivity to the needs of low- to middle- income taxpayers.

How to Enroll

Students in good academic standing may enroll in the Certificate for Tax program after completing one year of full-time law study (or 30 hours for part-time students).

A student enrolls by completing the Certificate Declaration Form and then submitting the completed Tax Law Certificate Enrollment Form to the Director of the Tax Law Certificate program. In completing the form, the student certifies that he or she can satisfy the grade requirements for the Certificate program and is committed to completing all of the Program's requirements. A student will be dropped from the Program if he or she fails to meet the requirements.