Taxpayer Loses Royalty Tax Case Appeal

In a recent appellate decision from the Ninth Circuit, a taxpayer/attorney/neurosurgeon/corporate shareholder who helped develop a patented imaging technology was held liable for ordinary income assessments with respect to annual royalty payments related to patent royalty income. Facts Dr. Aaron Filler, a licensed attorney and neurosurgeon, contributed to the development of a certain Diffusion Tensor…
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Private Jet Charitable Deduction Fails for Lack of Substantiation

In Izen v. Comm’r, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed a Tax Court decision to deny a taxpayer’s charitable contribution deduction where the taxpayer failed to meet the statutory documentation requirements for the charitable contribution.[1] The key documentation that the taxpayer lacked was a contemporaneous written acknowledgement that included his taxpayer identification number.…
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Change your Facts, Same Tax

Generally speaking, tax follows the facts. One can of course change those facts, but when done so merely superficially, intended results may not follow. Some may be more familiar with the phrase “putting lipstick on a pig.” Well, that seems to be more or less the case in the recent opinion released in the Eighth…
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Once Again, the “Tax Plan” Fails

On February 2, 2022, the Tax Court issued a memorandum opinion in the case of John M. Larson (“Larson”).[1] This case involves a dispute going back more than 20 years. Mr. Larson was an attorney and CPA. He and two other men, Robert A. Plaff and David Amir Makov, promoted a fraudulent tax shelter transaction…
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Court Says No to IRS Attempt to Aggregate Gifts for Discount Purposes

In a recent case out of the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut, the Court denied the IRS’ motion for summary judgment and refused to aggregate the gift of partial interests in real estate together for purposes of valuing the gifts and thus determining appropriate discounts.[1] The IRS alleged that no discount…
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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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Injunctive Relief Hiding in Plain Sight? CIC Services, LLC v. IRS

So, we did not write on the first District Court case which was a loss for CIC Services, LLC (“CIC”) and Ryan, LLC(“Ryan”), the Plaintiffs. But, a Supreme Court decision gave the Plaintiffs another bite at the apple. This case involves Notice 2016-66 (“Notice”), the older-sibling notice to Notice 2017-10, in which micro-captive insurance transactions…
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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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Executor Liability for Decedent’s Tax Obligations

A recent Tax Court opinion[1] highlights one of the risks of serving as executor or administrator of an estate, potential liability for a decedent’s tax obligations. The case involves application of the federal priority statute[2] applicable to fiduciaries.[3] That statute provides, in relevant part, that “a representative of a person or an estate (except a…
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