Heiting and the Claim of Right Doctrine

In the Heiting v. United States[1] decision issued on October 18, 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a district court decision[2] to dismiss a couple’s claim for a refund of taxes, rejecting the taxpayers’ argument that the repurchase of restricted stock previously sold by their trustee was effectively a…
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Proposed Tax Changes in the Updated Build Back Better Act

Earlier this year I discussed President Joe Biden’s proposed tax policies, which was prepared in anticipation of President Biden’s impending announcement regarding the Build Back Better Act.[1] As we approach the end of the Biden administration’s first year, tax professionals are on the edge of their seat. A plethora of different legislative changes directed at…
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Michael Jackson’s Estate, Valuation Battle of the Century

In May of this year the U.S. Tax Court issued a memorandum of opinion on the value of several assets included in the Estate of Michael Jackson (“Estate”) for federal estate tax purposes.[1] This opinion comes more than a decade after Jackson’s death in June of 2009 and provides some resolution (albeit subject to appeal)…
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IRS Demands iTunes Cards? Beware the Dirty Dozen!

In January of 2002 the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued a press release highlighting a dozen different tax scams and encouraged taxpayers to “maintain national vigilance.”[1] This list was dubbed the “Dirty Dozen,” and the IRS has continued to issue similar press releases containing updated lists of purported tax scams for taxpayers to be on…
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Original Characterization by Taxpayers Matters, Even When Reporting Improperly

In an ongoing breach of contract case,[1] in which the parties contested the treatment of certain transfers as either gifts or as compensation under a contract, the U.S. District Court of Arizona dismissed the portion of the plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment related to “gift tax damages” due to the fact that gift tax labilities…
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The Corporate Transparency Act – Potential Implications for Businesses and Practitioners

On January 1, 2021, the Senate voted to override former President Trump’s veto of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 (“NDAA”), which included the Corporate Transparency Act (“CTA”).[1] The CTA requires certain U.S. businesses, absent an exemption, to file beneficial ownership information with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”), in an attempt…
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How Not to Handle IRS Assessments

The United States District Court for The Western District of Virginia recently granted the government a default judgment against a law firm for nearly $220,000, plus interest and penalties, in unpaid federal employment taxes and unemployment taxes. U.S., v. Miller Law Group, P.C., et al.,[1] is a perfect example of one of the worst ways…
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Mississippi Supreme Court Strikes Down Medical Marijuana

Gray Edmondson previously discussed the tax considerations for Initiative Measure 65 (“Initiate 65”) and medical marijuana in Mississippi following the approval by a majority of voters in November 2020. However, it appears that Mississippians will have a while to wait before medical marijuana is actually legalized in Mississippi. On May 14, 2021, the Mississippi Supreme…
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Update on President Joe Biden’s Proposed Tax Policies

Introduction Last year I discussed President Joe Biden’s Proposed Tax Policy For Individuals, Charles J. Allen discussed the tax plans of the democratic presidential candidates, and Josh Sage discussed some of Biden’s potential changes. We are now a few months into President Biden’s tenure and the first ripples of tax reform can be felt by…
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Student Loans – Not Dischargeable, Even If Made to Family

When an individual files for bankruptcy, they are released from personal liability for certain specified types of debts. However, for public policy reasons, Congress has determined that certain debts can’t be discharged by filing for bankruptcy.[1] One of the most well-known non-dischargeable liabilities is student loan debt.[2] The recent U.S. Bankruptcy Court case, In re…
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