Thursday, February 9, 2012
The 11th Circuit yesterday reversed a sharply divided Tax Court (135 T.C. 557 (2010) and held that the § 107 parsonage allowance applies to only one home. Christian singer Phil Driscoll and his wife had claimed parsonage allowances on both their principal residence and a vacation home in these amounts:
The Driscolls argue that if Congress had intended to limit the income exclusion under § 107(2) to one’s principal place of residence, it could have added language to that effect. They point to language in other provisions, like I.R.C. §§ 121, 123, that exclude from gross income gains relating to a taxpayer’s “principal residence.” However, that Congress refers to “principal residence” in these other provisions does not ineluctably lead to the conclusion that we should read “home” in § 107 to imply a plural meaning, especially when the context of the use of the word “home” does not readily support plural connotations.