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section heading icon     landmarks

This page highlights landmarks in the evolution of taxation schemes, with an emphasis on Australian law.

Context is provided by the broader communications, information technology and media timeline on this site and the Australian constitutional landmarks page.

section heading icon     pre-modern

47BC Caesar establishes 1% sales tax

20BC Augustus establishes 5% inheritance tax, increases sales tax on slaves to 4%

1662 introduction of Hearth Tax in UK

1689 repeal of Hearth Tax in UK

section heading icon     early modern

1765 introduction of stamp tax in UK and colonies

1794 anti-excise Whiskey Rebellion in US

1798 US federal property tax

1799 Pitt introduces income tax in UK to fund war against France

1802 repeal of income tax in UK

1803 renewal of war results in Addington reintroducing income tax in UK

1812 US sales taxes on gold, silverware, jewelry and watches

1814 US develops but does not introduce federal income tax

1816 abolition of income tax in UK

1817 Ricardo's Principles of Political Economy & Taxation

section heading icon     steam age

1842 Peel reintroduces income tax in UK

1849 UK Board of Stamps & Taxes merges with Board of Excise as Board of Inland Revenue

1851 death duty introduced in NSW

1854 gold licence fee introduced in NSW and Victoria

1855 gold licence fee withdrawn in Victoria

1857 withdrawn in NSW

1862 US implements federal income tax

1865 death duty introduced in Tasmania as 'succession duty'

1870 death duty introduced in Victoria

1872 tariff scheme replaces federal income tax in US

1876 death duty introduced in South Australia

1877 Land Tax Act in Victoria

1880 withholding tax on distributed income of companies introduced in Tasmania

1884 withholding tax introduced in South Australia

1886 death duty introduced in Queensland

1895 death duty introduced in Western Australia

section heading icon     federation

1901 federal Customs duty on imported petroleum products

1907 Asquith in UK sets lower rate for taxing earnings than investments

1908 R v Barger (Clth)

1910 federal land tax in Australia

1911 surtax ('super tax' on wealthy) introduced in UK

1913 16th Amendment in US gives federal government greater taxing powers

1915 first national income tax in Australia

1916 federal Entertainments Tax Act in Australia

1916 'excess profits' tax in UK

1926 Victoria v Commonwealth (Federal Roads Case) (Cth)

1927 intergovernmental financial agreement in Australia

1929 federal excise on domestically produced petrol

1930 federal sales taxes in Australia

1938 Matthews v Chicory Marketing Board (Cth)

1940 WR Moran v Deputy Federal Comr of Taxation (NSW)

section heading icon     PAYE

1941 federal Pay-roll Tax Act in Australia

1942 South Australia v Commonwealth (First Uniform Tax Case) (Cth)

1944 Pay As You Earn (PAYE) introduced in Australia and UK

1946 repeal of wartime excess profits tax (up to 100%) in UK

1949 Parton v Milk Board (Vic) (Cth)

1951 Pye v Renshaw (Cth)

1952 end of federal land tax in Australia

1957 federal excise on 'on-road' diesel and aviation kerosene

1957 Victoria v Commonwealth (Second Uniform Tax Case) (Cth)

1959 Re Dymond (Cth)

1965 Corporation Tax (company profits) introduced in UK

1963 OECD Model Income Tax Convention

1965 Capital Gains Tax introduced in UK

1966 Harper v State of Victoria (Cth)

section heading icon     VAT and GST

1973 Value Added Tax replaces purchase tax in UK

1973 UK repeals surtax

1975 Commonwealth Taxation Review Committee report (Asprey Report)

1975 Victoria v Commonwealth and Hayden (AAP Case) (Cth)

1981 AG (Vic); ex rel Black v Commonwealth (DOGS Case) (Cth)

1983 federal excise on heating oil, fuel oil and kerosene

1985 National Tax Summit in Australia

1988 Air Caledonie v Commonwealth (Cth)

1989 Harper v Minister for Sea Fisheries (Cth)

1993 Australian Tape Manufacturers Association v Commonwealth (Cth)

1999 Intergovernmental Agreement on Principles for the Reform of Commonwealth-State Financial Relations (IGA) in Australia

1999 Airservices Australia v Canadian Airlines International (Cth)

2000 federal Goods & Services tax (GST) in Australia

2002 Luton v Lessels (Cth)


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version of July 2005
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