Rights against unreasonable search and seizure in tax: Canadian and New Zealand approaches compared
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This article investigates the role that the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 has played in New Zealand taxation case law and provides a comparison with the role played by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms 1982 in Canadian taxation cases. To determine this, the article analyses the interaction of the New Zealand Commissioner of Inland Revenue’s powers of search and seizure under ss 16 and 17 of the Tax Administration Act 1994 and s 21 of the Bill of Rights Act 1990 and compares it to the interrelation of the Canadian Minister of National Revenue Agency’s powers of search and seizure under s 231 of the Income Tax Act 1985 (Canada) and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms 1982. The article demonstrates that, notwithstanding some differences in the prescribed search and seizure measures in the respective jurisdictions, real difference between two countries is the assessment of what counts as reasonable and unreasonable search and seizure.