Melanie Hall QC spoke at the annual Farrer Tax Debate on 18th September, which has been featured in an article in The Times today.
The motion this year was ‘This house believes that paying tax is a moral obligation, not just a legal one’ and was chaired by Judge Roger Berner of the Upper Tribunal (Tax and Chancery).
Melanie Hall QC was paired with Edward Waldegrave.
The Times’ Edward Fennell remarked the following:
“My verdict was that the Hall-Waldegrave pairing was sparklingly superior. Their wit, imagination and style roused the audience. They pulled the heartstrings and were morally on message: namely, business must respond to the new moral zeitgeist. But as events in Scotland showed, guile and emotion only take you so far when wooing a mature audience. Grodzinski and Ridgway were students of the Alastair Darling school of rhetoric. They had one point to make and made it — again and again: what society needs is certainty; that is what the law gives. What’s morality in a society that believes VAT is the premium levied for paying a builder by cheque? Forget the airy-fairyness of morality; stick with legal precision. They won hands-down.”