Anne L. Alstott

Jacquin D. Bierman Professor in Taxation

J.D., Yale Law School, 1987

A.B., Georgetown University, 1984

Courses Taught
  • Federal Income Taxation
  • Family, State, and Market
  • Corporate Taxation
Anne L. Alstott

Anne Alstott is the Jacquin D. Bierman Professor at Yale Law School. She holds a secondary appointment as Professor, Yale Child Study Center, and is a Faculty Affiliate at the Yale Institution for Social and Policy Studies. From 2008 to 2011, she was the Manley O. Hudson Professor at the Harvard Law School.

Professor Alstott studies public policy toward children and families and, more broadly, public policy over the life cycle. She is the author of a number of books, including The Public Option (with Ganesh Sitaraman, Harvard University Press, 2019), A New Deal for Old Age (Harvard University Press, 2016), No Exit: What Parents Owe Children and What Society Owes Parents (Oxford University Press, 2004), and The Stakeholder Society (with Bruce Ackerman, Yale University Press,1999).

Her articles have been published in the Harvard Law Review, the Yale Law Journal, the Columbia Law Review, and other journals. She has written or co-written pieces for The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Huffington Post and Slate and has appeared on NPR's “Marketplace” and “On Point.”

Professor Alstott received a J.D. from the Yale Law School in 1987 and an A.B. in Economics, summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa (junior year), and with Departmental Honors, from Georgetown University in 1984 at age 20. She worked as an associate at Sullivan & Cromwell from 1987 to 1990 and as an Attorney-Advisor in the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Tax Policy, Office of Tax Legislative Counsel, from 1990 to 1992.

She began her teaching career at Columbia University School of Law, where she taught from 1992 to 1996. She joined the Yale Law School faculty with tenure in 1997 and remained there until 2008, when she left to join the Harvard Law School faculty, again with tenure. In 2011, she returned to Yale.

Professor Alstott has won five teaching awards.  In 1995, she won the Willis Reese Award for Excellence in Teaching at Columbia. In 1998, 2004, 2012, and 2017, she won the Yale Law Women’s Faculty Excellence Award.

Photo by Karissa van Tassel



The Public Option: How to Expand Freedom, Increase Opportunity, and Promote Equality (Harvard University Press, 2019) (with Ganesh Sitaraman).

A New Deal for Old Age: Toward a Progressive Retirement (Harvard University Press, 2016).

Taxation in Six Concepts: A Student's Guide (CCH, 2015).

No Exit: What Parents Owe Children and What Society Owes Parents (Oxford University Press, 2004).

The Stakeholder Society Yale University Press, 1999) (with Bruce Ackerman).

Academic Articles

McNamara M, Lepore C, Alstott A, Kamody R, Kuper L, Szilagyi N, Boulware S, Olezeski C. Scientific Misinformation and Gender Affirming Care: Tools for Providers on the Front Lines. J Adolesc Health. 2022 Jul 1:S1054-139X(22)00503-1. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2022.06.008. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 35787819.

Law and the Hundred-Year Life, 26 Elder L.J. 132 (2018).

The New Inequality of Old Age, 18 Theoretical Inquiries in Law 111 (2017).

A New Deal for Old Age, 97 B.U. L. Rev. 1933 (2016).

Neoliberalism in Family Law: Negative Liberty and Laissez-Faire Markets in the Minimal State, 77 L. & CONTEMP. PROBS. 25 (2015).

Featured in Cyra Choudhury, The Limited Vision of Neoliberal Family Law, JOTWELL (Feb. 18, 2015), at

Gender Quotas for Corporate Boards: Options for Legal Design in the United States, 26 Pace Int'l L. Rev. 38 (2014).

Updating the Welfare State: Marriage, The Income Tax, and Social Security in the Age of the New Individualism, 66 Tax L. Rev. 695 (2013).

Featured in Michael Livingston, Taxation and the Family: The Next Generation, JOTWELL (June 3, 2013).

Marriages as Assets? Real Freedom and Relational Freedom, in ARGUING ABOUT JUSTICE (Axel Gosseries and Yannick Vanderborght eds., 2011).

“A Fine is Not A Price:” Insights for Law, in IDEOLOGY, PSYCHOLOGY, AND LAW (Jon D. Hanson ed., 2011).

Why the Earned Income Tax Credit Doesn’t Make Work Pay, 73 LAW & SOC. PROBS. 285 (2010).

Private Tragedies? Family Law As Social Insurance, 4 HARV. L. & POL’Y REV. 3 (2010).

Family Values, Inheritance Law, and Inheritance Taxation, 63 TAX L. REV. 123 (2009).

Featured in Bridget Crawford, A Good Time to Die: Family-Based Objections to Inheritance Taxation, JOTWELL (Feb. 8, 2010).

The Stakeholder Society, in INT’L ENCYC. OF CIVIL SOC. (Helmut K. Anheier and Stefan Toepler eds., 2009).

Family Values and the Law of Inheritance, 7 SOCIO-ECONOMIC REVIEW 145 (January 2009).

Is the Family At Odds With Equality? The Legal Implications of Equality for Children, 82 S. CAL. L. REV. 1 (2008).

Equal Opportunity and Inheritance Taxation, 121 HARV. L. REV. 469 (2007).

War, Taxes, and Income Redistribution in the Twenties: The 1924 Veterans' Bonus and the Defeat of the Mellon Plan, 59 TAX L. REV. 373 (2006).

Caretaker Resource Accounts for Parents, in THE CITIZEN’S STAKE: EXPLORING THE FUTURE OF UNIVERSAL ASSET POLICIES (Will Paxton and Stuart White eds., Policy Press (U.K.), 2006).

Why Stakeholding? (with Bruce Ackerman) in REDESIGNING DISTRIBUTION (Erik Olin Wright ed., Verso, 2006).

What Does a Fair Society Owe Children – and Their Parents?, 72 FORDHAM L. REV. (April 2004) (invitational symposium on Rawls and the Law).

Work vs. Freedom: A Liberal Challenge to Employment Subsidies, 108 YALE L.J. 967 (1999).

The Uneasy Liberal Case Against Income and Wealth Transfer Taxation: A Response to Professor McCaffery, 51 TAX L. REV. 363 (1996).

Tax Policy and Feminism: Competing Goals and Institutional Choices, 96 COLUM. L. REV. 2001¬¬ (1996).

Federalism and U.S. Social Welfare Policy: Fundamental Change and New Uncertainties, 2 COLUM. J. EURO. LAW 441 (1996).

The Earned Income Tax Credit and the Limitations of Tax-Based Welfare Reform, 108 HARV. L. REV. 533 (1995).

Alleviating Marriage Penalties in the Income Tax and the Earned Income Tax Credit, 66 TAX NOTES 1343 (Feb. 27, 1995).

The Earned Income Tax Credit and Some Fundamental Institutional Dilemmas of Tax-Transfer Integration, 47 NAT'L TAX J. 609 (1994).

Approaches to Corporate Integration: The Treasury Department Report, 45 NAT'L TAX J. 209 (1992) (with economist James Mackie).

Additional Publications

Remarks, Yale Law School Commencement 2013, Yale Law School Commencement Addresses. Paper 9., at

What to Do About Inequality (response to David Grusky), Boston Review, March/April 2012, p. 27.

Democratizing Wall Street? (with Bruce Ackerman), Huffington Post, October 12, 2011.

Class Warfare? (with Bruce Ackerman), Huffington Post, September 27, 2011.

Why (and How) to Tax the Super-Rich (with Bruce Ackerman), Los Angeles Times, September 20, 2011.

Don’t Accept Injustice (response to Nancy Hirschmann) Boston Review, July 2, 2010.

Why Poor Kids Can’t Find A Dentist, Slate (May 29, 2007).

What We Owe To Parents, Boston Review (April/May 2004) (lead article in a New Democracy Forum with Robin West, Dorothy Roberts, Amy Wax, Richard Epstein, Eva Kittay, and Deborah Stone as commentators).

(A Basic Income is) Good for Women, in Delivering A Basic Income (Joshua Cohen and Joel Rogers eds., 2001).

Tony Blair’s Big Idea, N.Y. Times, May 6, 2001 (with B. Ackerman).

$80,000 and a Dream, The Am. Prospect, July 17, 2000 (with B. Ackerman).

Your Stake in America, 41 Az L. Rev. 249 (1999) (with B. Ackerman).