Mon Mar 30 2015   

Faculty Profile

John A. Swain

Chester H. Smith Professor of Law


E-mail:  John A. Swain
Office Number: 248
Office Phone: (520) 621-7673

Courses Taught:
State and Local Taxation (Substantial Paper) - Law 696n
State & Local Taxation - Law 655M
International Taxation - Law 655j
Formation and Taxation of Non-Profit Organizations - Law 652A
Advanced Corporate Taxation - Law 647B
Corporate Taxation - Law 647A
Federal Income Tax - Law 646
Estates and Trusts - Law 619
Legal Profession - Law 609
Property - Law 605

Curriculum Vitae
SSRN Published Papers

Biographical Information

John Swain has devoted most of his professional life to the study and practice of state and local taxation and is widely regarded as one of the nation's leading academic authorities on state and local taxation. He is co-author of the leading treatise on state taxation, State Taxation, vols. I & II (3d ed., Warren Gorham & Lamont, 2011 rev.) (with Jerome and Walter Hellerstein), and one the leading casebooks on state and local taxation, State and Local Taxation (9th ed., Thomson/West, 2009) (with Hellerstein, Stark, & Youngman). He is also co-author of Streamlined Sales and Use Tax (4th ed. 2007-08) (with Walter Hellerstein). In addition, he has written over 50 articles and essays regarding state taxation and related topics. Swain's work is regularly cited by courts and administrative tribunals throughout the nation. Professor Swain has also testified before Congress on matters of state tax policy and has appeared as an expert witness in state tax controversies, most recently in a matter regarding the property taxation of the Alaskan Pipeline.

Professor Swain has also practiced extensively in the state tax field. While a member of the Arizona Law faculty, he argued a case before the Ohio Supreme Court regarding the federal constitutionality of a state tax levy. DIRECT TV, Inc. v. Levin, 128 Ohio St.3d 68, 941 N.E.2d 1187 (2010) (amicus). Before joining the Arizona Law faculty, Swain was a partner with Streich, Lang, Weeks & Cardon (now Quarles & Brady), where he represented clients in a broad range of state and local tax matters.

In 2010, Professor Swain was named to the All-Decade State and Local Tax Team by State Tax Notes magazine.

Swain earned his bachelor's degree from Dartmouth College (summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and his law degree from Yale Law School, where he was an editor of the Yale Journal of Law and Policy.


Yale Law School, J.D. (1984) Editor, Law and Policy Review
Dartmouth College, A.B. (1978) graduated summa cum laude; Phi Beta Kappa

Admitted to Practice


Professional Work Experience

Professor of Law, James E. Rogers College of Law, 2009 - present
Associate Professor of Law, James E. Rogers College of Law, 2001 - 2009
Associate Professor of Law, Appalachian School of Law, 2000 - 2001 (Asst. Prof., 1999 - 2000)
Adjunct Professor of Law, Arizona State University College of Law, Fall 1996
Partner, Streich Lang, P.A., 1992 - 1998 (Associate Attorney, 1987 - 1991)
Associate Attorney, Rodey, Dickason, Sloan, Akin & Robb, 1984 - 1986

Representative Publications

State Jurisdiction to Tax "Nowhere" Activity, 33 Va. Tax Rev. 209 (2013) (co-author, with Walter Hellerstein).
2 State Taxation (3d ed., Warren, Gorham & Lamont 2013 rev.).
The Questionable Constitutionality of Amazon's Distribution Center Deals, 62 State Tax Notes 667 (2011) (co-author, with Walter Hellerstein).
Misalignment of Substantive and Enforcement Tax Jurisdiction in a Mobile Economy: Causes and Strategies for Realignment, 63 Natl. Tax J. 925 (2010).
State and Local Taxation: Cases and Materials (9th ed. 2009) (co-author, with Walter Hellerstein, Kirk J. Stark, & Joan M. Youngman).
Reforming the State Corporate Income Tax: A Market State Approach to the Sourcing of Service Receipts, 83 Tul. L. Rev. 285 (2008).
The Federal Role in State Taxation: A Normative Approach, 60 Nat'l Tax J. 611 (2007) (co-author, with William F. Fox).
Complete List of Publications


Academic Forum, New Mexico Tax Research Institute
Arizona State Bar

Public Service

Board member, Pima County Bar Association 2003 - present


Last Updated: 02/26/2014