Paul L. Caron
Dean


Wednesday, April 8, 2020

WSJ: Companies Save Billions In Taxes By Shifting Assets Around Globe

Richard Rubin (Wall Street Journal), Companies Save Billions in Taxes by Shifting Assets Around Globe:

Multinational corporations are devising new strategies to keep their taxes low, saving billions of dollars by navigating around attempts by the U.S. and European countries to tighten the tax net.

Companies that prospered for years with low tax rates are learning how to keep them that way, even as political pressure builds to tax them more. They are doing so by moving intangible assets such as patents and trademarks between subsidiaries and across borders.The moves don’t fundamentally change a company’s operations or pretax profit, but they can generate significant new deductions that can offset income for years or ensure that income gets taxed at lower rates.

More than a dozen major U.S. companies—including ViacomCBS Inc., Gilead Sciences Inc. and Activision Blizzard Inc. —have disclosed such maneuvers, reporting total future tax savings of at least $13.6 billion, according to a review of recent securities filings that companies completed prior to the coronavirus pandemic.

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April 8, 2020 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (0)

Taxing The Poor Through Real Estate Transfers

David A. Simon (Kansas), Taxing the Poor Through Real Estate Transfers, 2020 U. Ill.  Rev. Online 29 (2020):

This Article collects data on real estate transfer taxes in Illinois. It shows that municipal transfer taxes are more likely to affect poor communities than affluent communities.

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April 8, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Reck Presents Tax Evasion By The Wealthy: Measurement And Implications Online Today At Georgetown

Daniel Reck (London School of Economics) presents Tax Evasion by the Wealthy: Measurement and Implications (with John Guyton (IRS), Patrick Langetieg (IRS), Max Risch (Michigan) & Gabriel Zucman (UC-Berkeley)) online at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop Series hosted by John Brooks and Brian Galle:

ReckThis paper combines random audit data with new data on offshore bank accounts to estimate the size and distribution of individual income tax evasion in the United States. Evasion through offshore financial institutions is highly concentrated at the very top of the income distribution. Random audits virtually never detect this form of evasion. Data from random audits alone suggests an increasing rate of tax evasion through the income distribution up to the 99th percentile, but a sharp drop-off in the rate of evasion with income within the top 1 percent. Accounting for evasion through offshore financial institutions partly reverses this drop-off in the rate of evasion at the top, leading us to revise upwards random-audit estimates of the tax gap for very-high-income earners by 4 to 6 percentage points.

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April 7, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

WSJ: The Tax Consequences Of Working From Home During COVID-19

Wall Street Journal Tax Report, Millions Are Suddenly Working From Home. Can They Claim a Tax Break?:

IRS CovidIf you’re one of millions of Americans who are now working from home instead of the office because of the coronavirus pandemic, count yourself lucky: you aren’t sick and you have a job.

Still, both you and your employer may be wondering whether your remote work qualifies for any tax breaks. Have you bought a desk, a better chair or new computer equipment? Can you take a tax deduction on those improvements, as well as the increased utility costs needed to power a new home-office set up?

The short answer is no, the employee can’t take these deductions—but the employer often can. As part of the 2017 tax overhaul, Congress nearly doubled the standard deduction and repealed some specific write-offs on Schedule A. One was a partial deduction for unreimbursed employee expenses such as a home office or union dues.

But employers can claim these deductions, based on reimbursements to the worker. The good news for workers is that the breaks can help employees with a range of pandemic expenses and the payments don’t count as compensation, either for income or FICA taxes. ...

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April 7, 2020 in IRS News, Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, April 6, 2020

Universal Basic Income And The Value Of Work Beyond Incentives

Jonathan Grossberg (Robert Morris), Something for Nothing: Universal Basic Income and the Value of Work Beyond Incentives, 26 Wash. & Lee J. Civ. Rts. & Soc. Just. 1 (2019):

Proponents and opponents of a universal basic income all acknowledge that the most significant political challenge to its adoption in the United States is that a universal basic income would not have a work requirement attached. Often, this is characterized as a problem involving incentives—the availability of a universal basic income would cause many people to stop working (or significantly curtail the number of hours that they work) and simply live off the universal basic income. This Article makes three contributions to the literature related to a universal basic income: first, it provides a typology for understanding the many reasons for valuing work; second, it argues that the United States is unlikely to implement a universal basic income because a universal basic income does not account for several aspects of the value of work; and, third, it argues that advocates of a universal basic income should instead focus on the more modest goal of redefining the activities that constitute work and broadening the social safety net by expanding existing policies through the use of a broader definition of work.

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April 6, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Amy Monahan Named Distinguished University Professor At Minnesota

Professor Monahan Named a Distinguished McKnight University Professor:

Monahan (2020)Amy Monahan, Melvin Steen & Corporate Donors Professor and associate dean for research & planning at the Law School, has been named a Distinguished McKnight University Professor. 

The Distinguished McKnight University Professorship program honors the University’s “most distinguished and highest-achieving mid-career faculty who have …. made significant advances in their careers at the University of Minnesota, whose work and reputation are identified with the University, and whose accomplishments have brought great renown and prestige to Minnesota.”

Monahan joined the Law School faculty in Fall 2009. She teaches and writes in the areas of federal taxation and employee benefits law. Her scholarship focuses primarily on health and retirement plan regulation, and she has been actively involved in state and national efforts to improve the law in both areas. She has served on the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on the Determination of Essential Health Benefits, the independent committee charged with developing guidelines and principles for the Department of Health & Human Services to use in defining which medical treatments and services health insurance plans must cover as part of Affordable Care Act insurance reforms, and she has also advised various states regarding health care reform and implementation.

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April 6, 2020 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (0)

Lesson From The Tax Court: The Long And Short Of CDP

Tax Court (2017)I call it Collection Delay Process for a reason.  Two recent cases are bookend lessons on the speed of CDP.  These two cases suggest that the fastest CDP resolution one can reasonably expect is 2 years, but one can push that to 7-8 years depending on the complexity of the case and persistence of the taxpayer. 

First, Do S. Wong v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo 2020-32 (March 5, 2020) (Judge Lauber) is one of the shorter CDP timelines I’ve seen, with a correspondingly short opinion of 12 pages.  There, the taxpayer was able to stop active collection for about 2 years.

Second, Ronald M. Goldberg v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo 2020-38 (April 2, 2020) (Judge Morrison) is one of the longer CDP timelines I’ve seen, with a correspondingly long opinion of 163 pages.  There, the taxpayer was able to stop active collection for 7.5 years.

What each of these taxpayers gained in delay, however, is somewhat offset by the simultaneous extension of the collection limitations period.  As a result Mr. Wong's 2013 liability and Mr. Goldberg's much older 2004 liability are both now likely collectible through 2029.  The IRS may continue with enforced collection for both but one taxpayer will owe more in penalties and interest because of the longer delay.  Next week we will consider a lesson that Goldberg teaches on interest (unless a more interesting lesson comes up).  Today, however, I just present these cases to illustrate what practitioners might expect in the CDP process.

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April 6, 2020 in Bryan Camp, New Cases, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Practice And Procedure, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Hamilton (Social Distancing Performance)

View video directly on YouTube to avoid interruption caused by blog's refresh rate.

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April 6, 2020 in Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Saturday, April 4, 2020

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Lipman: State Tax Takeaways And Child Tax Credits

Francine J. Lipman (UNLV), State Tax Takeaways, in Holes in the Safety Net: Federalism and Poverty (Ezra Rosser (American) ed. Cambridge University Press 2020):

HolesWhile the aggregate tax system is mildly progressive, state and local tax systems are notably regressive. The lowest 95 percent of all income earners pay on average a higher percent of their income in state and local taxes than their share of aggregate income. By comparison, the top 5 percent of all income earners pay a lower percent of their income in state and local taxes than their aggregate share of household income. As a result, the lowest quartile of income earners pays a higher effective tax rate than the highest 1 percent of all income earners. The ratio of effective state and local tax rates for lowest income to highest income taxpayers is as high as 7 times in Wyoming, Washington and Florida. None of these states has an income tax so they rely heavily on regressive consumption tax revenues. For state and local governments this is a no-win race to the bottom because as income becomes increasingly concentrated among the wealthy, consumption and state and local tax revenues decrease.

This chapter reviews the basic components of state and local tax systems focusing on their many regressive attributes and make suggestions on how states might improve them. American has fifty state tax laboratories plus the District of Columbia that offer a myriad of dynamic time-tested tax structures. Nearly every state currently taxes lower-income families at a higher effective tax rate than higher income families. On average, the lowest income families are paying state and local taxes at an effective rate that is twice as high as the rate that the top 1 percent of income households enjoy. “Identifying state tax trends serves a dual purpose: first, as a leading indicator providing a sense of what we can expect in the coming months and years, and second, as a set of case studies, placing ideas into greater circulation and allowing empirical consideration of what has and has not worked.” As state and local governments continue to confront tax reform in these resource challenging times this chapter serves as a guide for front line progressive tax innovations, justice, and equity for all.

Francine J. Lipman (UNLV) & James E. Williamson (San Diego State), Child Tax Credit Redux, 165 Tax Notes 1303 (Nov. 25, 2019):

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April 4, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, April 3, 2020

Weekly SSRN Tax Article Review And Roundup: Holderness Reviews Mason's What The CJEU’s Hungarian Cases Mean For Digital Taxes

This week, Hayes Holderness (Richmond) reviews Ruth Mason (Virginia), What the CJEU’s Hungarian Cases Mean for Digital Taxes:

Holderness (2017)Long before the current crisis ramped up fiscal pressure on nations and states, governments have sought to tax the foreigner rather than those at home. Coordination between nations and states has sought to limit the ability of governments to engage in such protectionist or discriminatory taxation; the European Union’s protection of fundamental freedoms and the United States’ Commerce Clause (at least in its dormant capacity) serve as examples. As governments begin considering and adopting digital taxes, such as France’s Digital Services Tax, these coordinated efforts may prevent those governments from utilizing those taxes in protectionist ways by discriminating against out-of-state taxpayers. Indeed, France’s Digital Services Tax has been challenged for exactly that reason because the tax appears to target United States companies while failing to capture most French companies.

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April 3, 2020 in Hayes Holderness, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Weekly SSRN Roundup, Weekly Tax Roundup | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tax Policy In The Trump Administration

Avi-Yonah Presents Tax Expenditures Online Today At British Columbia

Reuven S. Avi-Yonah (Michigan) and Nir Fishbien (S.J.D. 2020, Michigan) present Tax Expenditures and Horizontal Equity: A Lost Lesson from Stanley Surrey online at University of British Columbia Peter A. Allard School of Law as part of its Tax Law and Policy Workshop Speaker Series (poster) hosted by Wei Cui:

Avi-Yonah 2Tax expenditures are “revenue losses attributable to provisions of the Federal tax laws which allow a special exclusion, exemption, or deduction from gross income or which provide a special credit, a preferential rate of tax, or a deferral of tax liability.’’ The concept of tax expenditures was coined by the first Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy, Stanley S. Surrey, in the late 1960s. The concept relies on the Haig-Simons definition of income (with certain adjustments) as the baseline, a deviation from which is considered a tax expenditure.

There are two basic problems with attempts to define tax expenditures against a Haig-Simons baseline. First, it is not clear why the Haig-Simons, and not other definitions of income, should be used as a baseline. Second, it is not clear why such deviations are normatively problematic. That, presumably, is why the literature now accepts the view we should just learn to live with the tax expenditures. Surrey would have disagreed, and this article represents an attempt to recapture his original view of tax expenditures and assess its present-day implications.

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April 3, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

My Daughter, My Hero

Jayne NYUAlmost four years ago, my beloved, brilliant, and beautiful daughter Jayne began her medical education at NYU. Her mother and I had planned to be at her graduation in seven weeks, but instead she and her classmates are graduating today in a virtual ceremony due to the coronavirus. We are thrilled that Jayne will be doing her residency near us at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, a mere 25 miles from Malibu. Yet instead of taking a well-deserved vacation after a grueling four years of medical school, Jayne has volunteered to work at the epicenter of the Covid-19 pandemic at NYU's hospital beginning on Monday. 

My late mother would have turned 93 tomorrow. Jayne is named after my sister, who died shortly after birth. My mother was a secretary at a nursing school and absolutely loved the medical profession. Shortly before my mother died in 1992, my pregnant wife and I told her we were going to name our daughter Jayne. My mother would be bursting with pride and gratitude today, tinged with fear for Jayne's safety, just as Jayne's parents and brother are.

Last week, Jayne wrote about her desire to serve in On Being An Almost Doctor During A Pandemic:

Today I found out that I matched to become an obstetrician/gynecologist. On Friday I will discover where I matched. For those in the medical community, “Match Day” is a huge celebration with family, friends, peers and mentors coming to celebrate your accomplishments. You all get together, open your envelopes (sometimes on stage in front of everyone) and cry either happy or sad tears with all of your closest friends and family and the people with whom you have survived four years of medical school. Instead, this year, I will get an e-mail at noon in my apartment alone. I will FaceTime my brother in Madison, WI and my parents in Los Angeles, CA who could no longer come in person to celebrate with me. My brother’s fiancé is on immunosuppressive medications for IBD and has a father going through chemotherapy right now. My parents are over the age of sixty. We all agreed the risk was far too great to be together in person. Quite frankly, I don’t know when I’ll see them again. 

In two and a half months I will graduate and become a fully-fledged physician. I don’t know right now if this timeline will be sped up as NYC is depleted of physicians who are not sick themselves or under quarantine and as more and more patients present for care. Part of me yearns to graduate early, to be able to do something instead of stay at home, aimlessly refreshing my phone for virus news, hoping for a glimpse into what is going on inside the halls of the hospitals that have become my home over these past four years, hospitals that I am now no longer allowed to visit because I am not “essential personnel.” I answer texts and questions from family and friends and send along the emails and graphics from my medical institution, calming panic, urging social distancing, trying to stay positive for the other people in my life. And yet, I think, lying in bed, put me in coach, wishing my medical school would send the promised email this morning about what we as medical students could do to help.

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April 3, 2020 in Coronavirus, Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (7)

Tax Lawyers Can Fight The Coronavirus Crisis With The Internal Revenue Code

Bob Rubin (Boutin Jones, Sacramento), Tax Lawyers Can Fight the Coronavirus Crisis with the Internal Revenue Code:

CoronavirusUnder section 139, gross income does not include any amount received by an individual as a qualified disaster relief payment. A qualified disaster relief payment is one of four types of payments made to, or for the benefit of, an individual, but only to the extent any expense compensated by the payment is not otherwise compensated for by insurance or otherwise. The first and most relevant type of payment is any amount paid to reimburse or pay reasonable and necessary personal, family, living, or funeral expenses incurred as a result of a qualified disaster. President Trump’s Stafford Act Declaration for New York, California and Washington made section 139 applicable.

The section 139 grants are not income to the employee/grantees, are not subject to employment taxes, are deductible by the employer/grantor and are not subject to information reporting under section 6041. The section 139 plan cannot discriminate based upon length of service or position. The grant cannot be in the nature of income replacement.

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April 3, 2020 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (2)

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Osofsky Presents Automated Legal Guidance Online Today At Duke

Leigh Osofsky (North Carolina) presents Automated Legal Guidance, 106 Cornell L. Rev. __ (2020) (with Joshua Blank (UC-Irvine)) online at Duke today as part of its Tax Policy Workshop Series hosted by Richard Schmalbeck and Lawrence Zelenak:

Osofsky (2019)Through online tools, virtual assistants and other technology, governments increasingly rely on artificial intelligence to help the public understand and apply the law. The Internal Revenue Service, for example, encourages taxpayers to seek answers regarding various tax credits and deductions through its online “Interactive Tax Assistant.” The U.S. Army directs individuals with questions about enlistment to its virtual guide, “Sgt. Star.” And the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services suggests that potential green card holders and citizens speak with its interactive chatbot, “Emma.” Through such automated legal guidance, the government seeks to provide advice to the public at a fraction of the cost of employing human beings to perform these same tasks.

This Article offers one of the first critiques of these new systems of artificial intelligence. It shows that automated legal guidance currently relies upon the concept of “simplexity,” whereby complex law is presented as though it is simple, without actually engaging in simplification of the underlying law. While this approach offers potential gains in terms of efficiency and ease of use, it also causes the government to present the law as simpler than it is, leading to less precise advice, and potentially inaccurate legal positions. 

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April 2, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

Avi-Yonah: Using The Corporate Tax Rather Than Antitrust To Curb The Power Of Big Tech

Reuven S. Avi-Yonah (Michigan), Antitrust and the Corporate Tax: A Missed Opportunity?:

Big Tech have clearly become for early 21st century America what Standard Oil, U.S. Steel, and the railroads were to early 20th century America: The embodiment of corporate power that enjoys a near monopoly on an important segment of economic activity. In response, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has proposed to treat the Big Tech as common carriers (forbidding them from selling their own goods and services on their platforms) and force them to dispose of their recent anti-competitive acquisitions. There may, however, be another way of reining in the power of the Big Techs that is less drastic than breaking them up, and may be a helpful complement to antitrust enforcement. This way derives from the other early 20th century innovation that was intended in 1909 to curb the power of the monopolies: The corporate tax.

The corporate tax can limit corporate power in three ways. First, even a low rate corporate tax requires corporations to provide the government with detailed information about their activities that is hard to obtain without a corporate tax (e.g., it forces them to calculate profits per taxing jurisdiction, which they may not otherwise do). Second, potentially the corporate tax, like any tax, involves the power to destroy if the rate is high enough. The knowledge that this could happen may limit the aggressiveness of corporate management (i.e., in the case of the Big Techs, their founders). Third and most important, the corporate tax can be used as a regulatory device, with the effective rate being raised or lowered either for specific desirable or undesirable activities (e.g., maintaining or compromising privacy) or in response to an overall corporate social responsibility score.

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April 2, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

Primer On How To Navigate The Recovery Rebate This Time

Two new posts from the eminent Carl Smith explain how the current rebate refund provisions differ from two past versions, and highlight what issues to anticipate with IRS administration of the provisions. 

"So, How Will the "Recovery Rebate" Refunds Work This Time? Part I:"

Section 6428 operates as a refundable credit – just like the earned income tax credit or the additional child tax credit.  Section 6428(b).  ... Because it has been awhile since this recovery rebate credit has been in the law (and because I litigated on behalf of taxpayers the only district court and appellate court opinions addressing the 2008 version of section 6428; see Sarmiento v. United States, 812 F. Supp. 2d 137 (E.D.N.Y. 2011), aff’d in part and rev’d in part, 678 F.3d 147 (2d Cir. 2012), and Maniolos v. United States, 741 F. Supp. 2d 555 (S.D.N.Y. 2010), aff’d per order, 469 Fed. Appx. 56(2d Cir. 2012)), I thought it would be useful for me to give a practical primer on how the new recovery rebate is written, how it was administered last time, and how I think it will be administered this time – because I anticipate the IRS will make administrative choices in 2020 similar to those that the IRS made in 2008....

"So, How will the "Recovery Rebate" Refunds Work This Time? Part II:"

This post is to discuss two issues under the prior versions of section 6428 that led to litigation and how those issues have or have not been addressed by the current legislation.  The two issues are:

  1. Whether the IRS may apply the recovery rebate credits (including stimulus checks) under section 6402 to reduce certain outstanding debts; and
  2. Which taxable year is the stimulus check “for” for purposes of bankruptcy?

The answer to the first question is decidedly “no”, with one exception.

The answer to the second question is still open – at least outside the Second Circuit.

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April 2, 2020 in Bryan Camp, Tax, Tax News, Tax Practice And Procedure | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wealth Taxes And Capital Markets

John D. Stowe (Ohio University), Wealth Taxes and Capital Markets:

Wealth taxes have been adopted or considered as an adjunct to existing tax systems such as income taxes, property taxes, and consumption taxes. Discussions about a wealth tax are usually a mixture of political, social, and economic issues, with many of the published papers designed to serve an author’s agenda. The purpose of this note is to leave many of these issues behind and to focus on the effects of a wealth tax on capital markets.

Highlights

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April 2, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Miller & Maine: Wealth Transfer Tax Planning After The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

John A. Miller (Idaho) & Jeffrey A. Maine (Maine), Wealth Transfer Tax Planning after the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, 2020 BYU L. Rev. ___:

On December 17, 2017, Congress passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). Among its many impacts, the TCJA increased the inflation adjusted estate tax basic exclusion amount to $10,000,000 on a temporary basis. This has dramatic implications for many existing and future estate plans, including a major crossover impact on income tax planning. In this article we explain the operation of the federal wealth transfer taxes (the estate tax, the gift tax and the generation skipping transfer tax) in the wake of the TCJA and of the newly issued regulations interpreting the TCJA changes. We also explain the basic tax planning techniques for wealth transmission. The overall design of this article is to bring the reader into the current wealth transfer tax planning picture while providing references to more detailed treatments of particular topics within this broad field.

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April 1, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

WSJ: Pelosi May Tie Future Coronavirus Relief To Retroactive Repeal Of Limitation On State & Local Tax Deduction

Wall Street Journal editorial, Pelosi Pitches a Blue-State Bailout:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi held up last week’s coronavirus relief bill with demands related to corporate diversity, carbon emissions and election reform. But Democrats are far from finished using the crisis to try to force through partisan priorities they couldn’t pass in normal times. Mrs. Pelosi is now hinting the price for further economic relief may include expanding a regressive tax deduction for high-earners in states run by Democrats.

On Monday Mrs. Pelosi told the New York Times she wanted Congress to “retroactively undo SALT.” In the 2017 tax reform, Republicans limited the state and local tax deduction to $10,000. That raised federal tax revenue mostly from high-tax parts of states like California, New York and New Jersey and helped pay for the rate cuts on corporate, small business and individual incomes. According to the Tax Foundation, the cap raised almost $33 billion in 2018 from those earning more than $1 million per year and had little impact for those earning less than $100,000.

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April 1, 2020 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (2)

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April 1, 2020 in About This Blog, Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Avi-Yonah, Saez & Zucman: Taxes In The Time Of Coronavirus — It Is Time To Revive The Excess Profits Tax

Reuven S. Avi-Yonah (Michigan), Taxes in the Time of Coronavirus: Is it Time to Revive the Excess Profits Tax?:

At a time when most American citizens and businesses are suffering catastrophic economic damage from the Coronavirus recession, some corporations—such as Amazon, 3M, Gilead, and Zoom—are seeing their profits rise dramatically because of the pandemic.

Given that most corporations are losing money, but some are now earning enormous profits due to the crisis, it is time to revive the wartime excess profits taxes that the US deployed in World War I and World War II to prevent corporate winners from achieving this form of opportunistic unjust enrichment.

The most recent US excess profits tax was enacted shortly before the US entered World War II. It was first adopted in 1940, amended in 1941, 1942, 1943, and 1945, and repealed in 1950. ...

Given the diversity of the corporations that are likely to profit from the pandemic and the fact that most of them are not engaged in capital intensive activities, the tax should use the average earnings method based on 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019. The rest of the World War II methodology can be applied unchanged. Thus, to use Amazon as an example, one would start with Amazon’s 2020 net income, subtract a credit for average 2016-2019 earnings plus 8% of R&D (the principal capital investment), and apply a 95% tax rate to the excess profits. The resulting tax can be reduced by credits for wages of additional employees hired in 2020 to encourage the winners to hire and pay well during the recession.

It is unconscionable that some corporations would profit from the current crisis while everyone else suffers. Moreover, the federal government will be spending trillions to save the economy, and much of this spending will benefit the winners since it will be spent on their services. There is no reason not to use this opportunity to revive the excess profit tax and apply it to profits that derive entirely from the pandemic.

New York Times op-ed:  Jobs Aren’t Being Destroyed This Fast Elsewhere. Why Is That?, by Emmanuel Saez (UC-Berkeley) & Gabriel Zucman (UC-Berkeley):

Some businesses, more broadly, will disproportionately benefit from the pandemic. While tens of thousands of brick-and-mortar stores are closed, Amazon sales rise. The Seattle-based company is one of the few S&P 500 firms whose stock price is higher today than at the beginning of the year. Cloud computing is exploding. Facebook traffic is booming.

But these windfall profits have a fair, comprehensive and transparent solution: The government should impose excess profits taxes, as it has done several times in the past during periods of crisis.

In 1918, all profits made by corporations above and beyond an 8 percent rate of return on their capital were deemed abnormal, and abnormal profits were taxed at progressive rates of up to 80 percent. Similar taxes on excessive profits were applied during World War II and the Korean War. These taxes all had one goal — making sure that no one could benefit outrageously from a situation in which the masses suffered.

To help make this happen, the next bill needs an excess profits tax. If Congress fails to act, the pandemic could well reinforce two of the defining trends of the pre-coronavirus American economy: the rise of business concentration and the upsurge of inequality.

Some will say that the solutions we’ve outlined show excessive faith in government. They will correctly point out that some of these policies are undesirable in normal times. But these are not normal times. The big battles — be they wars or pandemics — are fought and won collectively. In this period of national crisis, hatred of the government is the surest path to self-destruction.

April 1, 2020 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (0)

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April 1, 2020 in About This Blog, Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Satterthwaite Presents Tax Status As A Signal Online Today At Georgetown

Emily Satterthwaite (Toronto) presents Tax Status as a Signal online at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop Series hosted by John Brooks and Brian Galle:

Satterthwaite (2019)Can an entrepreneur’s choice of tax status act as a signal that conveys valuable private information about her firm in a real-world marketplace?There have been hints that this happens, but exactly how such signaling would work and whether it is normatively desirable has received little scholarly attention. Building on recent survey evidence that small-firm entrepreneurs may view voluntary value-added tax (“VAT”) registration as a way to secure reputational advantages, this paper applies the costly signaling model of Spence (1973) to propose a novel informational account of firms’tax status choices in the context of a VAT. It explores whether an entrepreneur’s choice to voluntarily VAT-register her small firm might function as a signal of the firm’s quality in much the same way that a job applicant’s investment in education can function as a signal of the applicant’s productivity.

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March 31, 2020 in Colloquia, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Tax Maven Podcast Episode 3: Do Your Taxes Like Nobody's Watching (Jeff Hoopes)

Episode 3, Do Your Taxes Like Nobody's Watching — Because Honestly, They Probably Aren't (Jeff Hoopes (University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School)):

Tax MavenEpisode Summary:  A typical consumer spends exactly zero hours a day thinking about corporate tax compliance. Jeff Hoopes, a Tax Maven who devotes approximately 100% of his time to thinking about tax as the research director of the UNC Tax Center, explains why that disconnect matters. In this Episode, he explains the power and the limits of sophisticated enforcement tools such FIN 48 and the Schedule UTP and the humble credit card. He explores whether firms that donated to a particular political party respond differently to tax breaks such as those delivered by the 2017 tax law changes. Hoopes also shows why data from corporate tax returns challenge the conventional wisdom that private companies engage in more aggressive tax planning. His Pencil Question comes from an article by Edward J. Mccaffery in the Wisconsin Law Review.

Episode Notes: Jeff Hoopes is an associate professor and the Harold Q. Langenderfer Scholar of Accounting at the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School. Hoopes focuses on understanding how taxpayers respond to tax laws and changes in tax enforcement and uses his expertise to explain why. His work emphasizes the intersection of tax law, accounting, public economics, and finance.

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March 31, 2020 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, March 30, 2020

Polsky Presents Explaining Choice-Of-Entity Decisions By Silicon Valley Start-Ups Online Today At BYU

Gregg Polsky (Georgia) presents Explaining Choice-of-Entity Decisions by Silicon Valley Start-Ups online at BYU today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Cliff Fleming and Gladriel Shobe:

Polsky (2018)Perhaps the most fundamental role of a business lawyer is to recommend the optimal entity choice for nascent business enterprises. Nevertheless, even in 2018, the choice-of-entity analysis remains highly muddled. Most business lawyers across the United States consistently recommend flow-through entities, such as limited liability companies and S corporations, to their clients. In contrast, a discrete group of highly sophisticated business lawyers, those who advise start-ups in Silicon Valley and other hotbeds of start-up activity, prefer C corporations.

Prior commentary has described and tried to explain this paradox without finding an adequate explanation. These commentators have noted a host of superficially plausible explanations, all of which they ultimately conclude are not wholly persuasive. The puzzle therefore remains.

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March 30, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

A Tax Prof's Day In Covid-19 America Without Child Care

Slate, A Day in America Without Child Care:

CoronavirusAs the COVID-19 pandemic shuts down day cares and schools, countless parents have been left with no child care at all. Some are trying to do their jobs remotely, while also changing diapers and helping bored teens figure out online courses and brainstorming games to distract toddlers. Some essential workers are still going in every day, while exhausted family members take on child care duties or school-age kids find ways to entertain themselves. So we picked a single weekday—last Thursday—and asked a bunch of parents all around the country to record how that stretch of time unfolded for them without child care, hour by hour. Here’s the combined timeline of their days.

8 p.m. Steven, New York, tax law professor: We play bingo with a college buddy of mine. I send her a photo of a bingo card and patch her in by video. My wife ends up winning and our son comes in second, followed by a team of stuffed animals that was also playing.

9 p.m. Steven, New York, tax law professor: Simpsons!

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March 30, 2020 in Coronavirus, Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News | Permalink | Comments (0)

Lesson From The Tax Court: One Plus One Equals One

Tax Court (2017)Author’s Note: Like so many others I am now working from home and climbing various learning curves, some steeper than others.  So please accept my apologies if today’s post contains more errors than normal.  Hopefully they will just be errors of the fingers and not of the brain.  

The case of Sean McNamee v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2020-37 (Mar. 18, 2020) (Judge Lauber) teaches us that taxpayers have only one opportunity to challenge a tax liability in a Collection Due Process (CDP) hearing, even though the Tax Code provides for up to two CDP hearings for any given tax liability.  In today's case the IRS erroneously refused to let Mr. McNamee challenge a tax liability in his first CDP hearing.  He did not obtain Tax Court review of that decision.  Instead, he re-challenged the liability in a second, later, CDP hearing involving the same underlying liability.  Mistake.  The Court held that even though the IRS screwed up the first time, the taxpayer’s failure to obtain judicial review of the first hearing precluded him from challenging the underlying liability in the second.  The lesson here centers on a tricky quirk in the CDP rules.  Details below the fold.   

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March 30, 2020 in Bryan Camp, New Cases, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Practice And Procedure, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (1)

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Saturday, March 28, 2020

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Neil Diamond's Sweet Caroline For The Age Of The Coronavirus: 'Hands ... Washing Hands'

Showing my age (and cheesy musical tastes): here is Neil Diamond's adaptation of Sweet Caroline for the age of the coronavirus:

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March 28, 2020 in Coronavirus, Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (1)

Friday, March 27, 2020

Auerbach Presents U.S. Inequality And Fiscal Progressivity: An Intragenerational Accounting Online Today At British Columbia

Alan Auerbach (UC-Berkeley) presents U.S. Inequality And Fiscal Progressivity: An Intragenerational Accounting (with Laurence J. Kotlikoff (Boston University) & Darryl Koehler (Economic Security Planning)) online at University of British Columbia Peter A. Allard School of Law as part of its Tax Law and Policy Workshop Speaker Series hosted by Wei Cui:

Auerbach (2020)This study measures inequality and fiscal progressivity. It differs from prior such analyses by measuring inequality based on remaining lifetime spending rather than particular resources, like wealth and current income, that only partially determine lifetime spending, and by considering inequality and progressivity within generations.

To estimate the distribution of remaining lifetime spending, we run the 2016 Federal Reserve Survey of Consumer Finances (after imputing missing data from other surveys) through The Fiscal Analyzer (TFA), a life-cycle consumption-smoothing program that incorporates remaining life-time resources, borrowing constraints and all major federal and state tax and transfer programs.

We find that inequality in wealth and income dramatically overstate inequality in remaining lifetime spending. For example, the richest 1 percent of forty year olds, where resources are measured as the sum of human plus non-human wealth, have 34.1 percent of the cohort’s total non-human wealth, but account for only 14.5 percent of the cohort’s total remaining lifetime spending. The poorest quintile of forty year olds own just 0.6 percent of the cohort’s wealth, but account for 7.3 percent of its remaining lifetime spending.

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March 27, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

De La Feria Presents The Impact Of Public Perceptions On VAT Rates Policy Online Today At Indiana

Rita de la Feria (University of Leeds) presents The Impact of Public Perceptions on VAT Rates Policy (with Michael Walpole (University of New South Wales)) online at Indiana today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Leandra Lederman:

Rdlf-brazil2018The traditional view in VAT is that excluding certain products from its base decreases the natural regressivity of the tax. Whilst this traditionally view has been consistently put into question over the last thirty years by economic and legal evidence, public perceptions are still heavily influenced by it. Using the old European VAT system and the newer Australian VAT system as case studies we demonstrate how policy debates and changes as regards VAT rates have been heavily influenced by those public perceptions, against the evidence, and how industry groups, which would be set to lose out from specific policies, are able to use the information asymmetry subjacent to those perceptions to defend their interest in favour or against reform.

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March 27, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tax Policy In The Trump Administration

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Thomas Presents Taxing Nudges Online Today At Duke

Kathleen Delaney Thomas (North Carolina) presents Taxing Nudges at Duke yesterday as part of its Tax Policy Workshop Series hosted by Richard Schmalbeck and Lawrence Zelenak:

Thomas (2019)Governments are increasingly turning to behavioral economics to inform policy design in areas like health care, the environment, and financial decision-making. Research shows that small behavioral interventions, referred to as “nudges,” often produce significant responses at a low cost. The theory behind nudges is that, rather than mandating certain behaviors or providing costly economic subsidies, modest initiatives may “nudge” individuals to choose desirable outcomes by appealing to their behavioral preferences. For example, automatically enrolling workers into savings plans as a default rather than requiring them to actively sign up has dramatically increased enrollment in such plans. Similarly, allowing individuals to earn “wellness points” from attendance at a gym, redeemable at various retail establishments, may improve exercise habits.

A successful nudge should make a desired choice as simple and painless as possible. Yet one source of friction may counteract an otherwise well-designed nudge: taxation.

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March 26, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

Taxation Without Immunization: Exercising The Federal Taxing Power To Increase Childhood Vaccination Rates

Nicholas R. Consalvo (J.D. 2020, Florida), Note, Taxation Without Immunization: Exercising the Federal Taxing Power to Increase Childhood Vaccination Rates, 71 Fla. L. Rev. 1513 (2019):

This Note will discuss the need to exercise the taxing power of the federal government in an effort to restore immunization rates to their historically high levels. Recent spikes in unvaccinated children have resulted in global outbreaks of diseases that were near elimination. This Note’s solution to the growing anti-vaccination movement is the implementation of a federal tax plan targeted at parents who—without a valid medical exemption—refuse to vaccinate their children against specific classes of vaccine-preventable diseases. This federal tax plan could take the form of an income-based tax, or loss of child tax credits, enforced against parents based on the age and amount of time their child has remained unvaccinated.

Global efforts to increase vaccination rates and fight outbreaks have already resulted in similar fines and taxes as those advocated in this Note. Currently, the entire public is responsible for the burden of funding initiatives to treat and prevent outbreaks caused by parents who abuse nonmedical exemptions to evade existing vaccination mandates. That burden must shift and fall only upon the individuals who refuse to acknowledge that immunizing against vaccine-preventable diseases is a fundamental necessity for preserving public health.

March 26, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Kamin Presents How Far To Go In Reforming Taxation Of Wealth? Online Today At UC-Irvine

David Kamin (NYU) presents How Far to Go in Reforming Taxation of Wealth? online at UC-Irvine today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Joshua BlankVictor Fleischer, and Omri Marian:

Kamin (2018)Reforming the taxation of wealth of individuals is now one of the leading issues among progressive policymakers. It is being prominently discussed on the presidential campaign trail and in the halls of Congress, as a way of addressing our failure to effectively tax some of the richest Americans. Most of these proposals involve significant changes, but some go much further than others and involve more dramatic reforms. The more fundamental reform options come in two basic varieties—annual wealth taxation and accrual income taxation, sometimes known as mark-to-market income taxation. By contrast, the more incremental reforms focus on more targeted changes to the current system with a focus on two key areas: step-up in basis at death and estate and gift taxation. A key question then is how far to go in reforming the taxation of wealth.

This paper presents a qualified case for pursuing the fundamental reform options at least eventually, either annual wealth taxation or accrual taxation.

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March 25, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Brooks Presents Redesigning Education Finance: How Student Loans Outgrew the 'Debt' Paradigm Online Today At Georgetown

John Brooks (Georgetown) presents Redesigning Education Finance: How Student Loans Outgrew the "Debt" Paradigm, 109 Geo. L.J. ___ (2019) (with Adam J. Levitin (Georgetown)), online at Georgetown today as part of its Tax Law and Public Finance Workshop Series:

Brooks (John)Federal student loans are fundamentally different from any other type of credit product: they do not require the full repayment of all principal and accrued interest. Instead, borrowers have the contractual right to satisfy their obligations by paying only a percentage of their income for a fixed period of time. In other words, debt forgiveness is contractually baked into the student loan product.

This and other unusual features of federal student loans reveal that the economic structure of student loans has evolved to resemble a federal grant program coupled with a progressive income-based tax on recipients, rather than a true debt product. The education finance system, however, still relies on the legal, financial, and institutional apparatus of “debt” that developed under the pre-2010 structure of the education finance system, which was based on private loans backed by federal government guarantees, rather than today’s direct federal lending program. These legal, financial, and institutional structures are a mismatch with the current program’s economic realities and policy goals.

This Article argues that nearly all of the problems in education finance, including high levels of default, abusive servicing, and even the very idea of a student debt crisis arise from the frictions between the legal and institutional apparatus of “debt” and the economic reality of subsidized finance and progressive, income-based repayment and debt forgiveness.

Accordingly, this Article argues for calling federal student loans what they really are—a tuition grant plus an income surtax on students.

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March 24, 2020 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (1)

Avi-Yonah: BEPS And The TCJA

Reuven S. Avi-Yonah (Michigan), Constructive Dialogue: BEPS and the TCJA:

US international tax law is commonly conceived as developed in the US and influencing the development of other countries' international tax law. This paper will argue that in the case of the TCJA, the US legislation was heavily influenced by the OECD BEPS project, and that the continuing OECD work in Pillars I and II is likely to have a similar influence on the future development of US international tax law.

March 24, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, March 23, 2020

Bearer-Friend Presents In-Kind Taxpaying: Lessons And Risks Online Today At BYU

Jeremy Bearer-Friend (George Washington) presents In-Kind Taxpaying: Lessons and Risks online at BYU today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Cliff Fleming and Gladriel Shobe:

BearerFriend (2020)This Article examines non-cash remittance of tax obligations (ie; paying taxes "in-kind"). It begins by defining in-kind taxpaying, describing the early roots of in-kind taxpaying, and documenting the broad variety of inkind taxpaying in the US. It then discusses the lessons and risks of in-kind taxpaying. In doing so, this Article makes three contributions. First, it improves our definition of taxpaying by identifying the wide variety of inkind remittances that already occur in our current tax system, offering a taxonomy for how to understand in-kind remittances within a modern economy that relies primarily on cash taxes. Second, it refutes the presumption that in-kind remittance of tax obligations is not viable, thus expanding the tax tools available to local, state, and federal governments and demonstrating how narrow presumptions about tax remittance have predetermined core tax policy choices. Third, it confronts the substantial dangers of in-kind taxpaying, using these risks to propose new principles for limiting the design and administration of in-kind taxpaying.

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March 23, 2020 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink | Comments (0)

Free Online Content: Business Taxation/Subchapter K

CoronavirusIf you are looking for “plug and play” online content for your business taxation or partnership taxation course, Professor Cass Brewer, Georgia State University College of Law, is offering numerous videos that he created for his fall 2019 online Partnership & LLC Taxation course. See the table below for details. Brewer warns, “Caveat emptor: The videos are far from perfect because they were created for the first iteration of my online Partnership & LLC Taxation course. Some of the videos have technical glitches, and the closed captions for many of the videos contain typos and other errors. In a pinch, however, you may find the videos useful to finish out the semester.”

Quick Links to Online Materials Regarding Subchapter K (Partnership & LLC Taxation):

Topic

IRC Sections

Video Link

Definition of a Partnership and Choice of Entity

IRC §§ 761(a); 7701(a)(3); skim IRC § 199A

Video 1: Definition of Tax Partnership

Video 2: Types of State-Law Business Organizations

Video 3: Four Federal Income Tax Regimes

Video 4: Classification (a/k/a “Check-the-Box”) Rules

Video 5: Tax Hieroglyphics

Partnership Formation: Basics

IRC §§ 704(c)(1)(A) & (c)(3), 705(a), 721, 722, 723, 731(a)(1), 733

IRC §§ 1245(b)(3), 1223(1) & (2)

Video 1: Introduction

Video 2: AB, LLC Formation

Video 3: Formation/Conversion

Video 4: Formation/Conversion

Video 5: Formation/Conversion

Partnership Formation: Advanced (Special Rules, Liabilities, and Gain Recognized)

IRC §§ 704(c)(1)(A) & (c)(3), 724

IRC §§ 731(a)(1), 752(a)-(c)

Video 1: IRC §§ 704(c) and 724

Video 2: IRC §§ 704(c) and 724 Illustrated

Video 3: Formation and Liabilities Part One

Video 4: Formation and Liabilities Part Two

Video 5: Formation (Gain Recognized)

Partnership Operations: Taxable Years, Methods of Accounting, Allocations, Outside Basis Adjustments, Outside Basis Loss Limitation

IRC §§ 446(a)-(c), 701, 702(a)-(b), 703, 704(a) & (d)

IRC §§ 705(a)(1)-(2), 706(a)-(b)(1)(B)

Skim IRC §§ 448(a)-(c), 6031(a)-(b)

Video 1: Taxable Years and Methods of Accounting

Video 2: Allocations of Tax Items

Video 3: Outside Basis Adjustments and Loss Limitation

Substantial Economic Effect

IRC § 704(a) & (b)

Video 1: Introduction

Video 2: Analysis of Orrisch

Issuing Partnership Interests in Exchange for Services

IRC §§ 83(a)-(c), (h); 721; 1061

Video 1: Introduction

Video 2: Capital v. Profits Interests

Video 3: IRC § 1061 (“Carried Interests)


Built-In Gain (Loss), Revaluations, Tax/Book Depreciation (Traditional Method), and Anti-Character Conversion Rules

IRC § 704(c)(1)(A) & (3)

IRC § 704(b)

IRC § 724(a)-(c)

Video 1: Introduction

Video 2: Book/Tax Gain (Loss) Allocations

Video 3: Revaluations

Video 4: Reverse 704(c) Allocations

Video 5: Anti-Character Conversion (§ 724)

Partnership Liabilities: Recourse v. Nonrecourse

IRC §§ 704(c)(1)(A) & (3); 752(a)-(c)

Video 1: Recourse v. Nonrecourse Debt

Video 2: Nonrecourse Deductions

Video 3: Liability Sharing Rules of IRC 752

Video 4: Recap

Transfers of Interests

IRC §§ 705(a); 706(c); 741; 751(a), (c), (d), (f); 752(d)

Video 1: In General

Video 2: Seller’s Perspective

Video 3: Buyer’s Perspective

Current and Liquidating Distributions of Cash

IRC §§ 731-735

Video: In General

TaxProf Blog coronavirus coverage:

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March 23, 2020 in Coronavirus, Tax, Teaching | Permalink | Comments (0)

Lesson From The Tax Court: Last Known Address Rules And The Rule Of Law

Dog 2Celebrities are often hard to contact.  “Call my agent” is their standard line.  When do that on their tax returns, they should know that the last known address rules apply to celebrities the same as to regular folk.  That is the lesson in Duane Lee Chapman and Alice E. Smith, Deceased v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2019-110 (Aug. 29, 2019) (Judge Ashford).  There, the taxpayers—famous from the TV reality show Dog the Bounty Hunter—put their agents’ address on their tax returns.  It cost them the opportunity to contest tax liabilities in Tax Court.

The case also shows us another meaning of the term Rule of Law.  That is why I am presenting this case today, as a follow-up on last week’s lesson.  Details below the fold. 

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March 23, 2020 in Bryan Camp, New Cases, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Practice And Procedure, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (1)

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Sunday, March 22, 2020

NY Times: The Christian Response To The Coronavirus — Stay Home

New York Times op-ed:  The Christian Response to the Coronavirus: Stay Home, by Esau McCaulley (Wheaton College):

CoronavirusWhen loving your neighbor means keeping your distance.

The church, the actual building that houses black bodies and souls, stands at the center of black life and culture. It is a fact hiding in plain sight that one of the first cooperative economic ventures former slaves undertook was the purchase and maintenance of churches. Without the cooperation of the church, many black colleges, universities and political organizations would not exist. To this day, American black Christians attend church at a higher rate than any other ethnic group.

It is not then surprising that when terrorists wanted to strike fear in the hearts of black believers, they burn and attack our churches. Despite the trauma, the church has remained a source of hope. The marches and sit-ins of the civil rights movement were often preceded by mass worship services.

But what happens when the church is a part of the danger?

With the novel coronavirus spreading rapidly, this is not simply a question for individual church members. The pandemic forces the church as an institution to consider its role during a time of crisis. Many religious communities are suspending their typical operations. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has stopped services worldwide. The Catholic Church in Rome shuttered its doors temporarily. Much of Washington State has done the same. What should we think about this? Are Christians abandoning their responsibility to the sick and suffering?

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March 22, 2020 in Coronavirus, Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

NY Times: This Evangelical Megachurch In Ohio Isn’t What You Think

Wonderful New York Times op-ed about our former church in Cincinnati:  This Evangelical Megachurch in Ohio Isn’t What You Think, by Chuck Mingo (Pastor, Crossroads Church), Lynn Watts (Spiritual Growth Director, Crossroads Church) & Troy Jackson (State Strategies Director, Faith in Action):

Crossroads Fastest GrowingEvery Sunday, about 50,000 people listen to the sermon from Crossroads Church in Ohio, which has one of us, Mr. Mingo, as a pastor. Crossroads is the third-largest church in America and 80 percent white, but it rejects many of the tropes associated with the religious right. Instead of demanding that congregants conform to a set of ideological beliefs, it asks that they open themselves to being challenged, offended or uncomfortable, especially about race. And it’s striking a chord: Crossroads is among the top three fastest-growing churches in the country.

In 2015, the national policing controversy arrived in Cincinnati when a police officer killed an unarmed black man. Mr. Mingo, who is black, felt called to be a voice for racial reconciliation. With the approval of the head pastor of Crossroads, who is white, a six-week program on racial reconciliation called Undivided was born. Participants were placed in small, multiracial groups where they held meaningful conversations and connect to fundamental truths about being Christians.

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March 22, 2020 in Legal Education, Tax | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Top Five New Tax Papers

There is a bit of movement in this week's list of the Top 5 Recent Tax Paper Downloads, with a new paper debuting on the list as #5:

  1. SSRN Logo (2018)[332 Downloads]  A New Global Tax Deal for the Digital Age, by Allison Christians (McGill) & Tarcisio Diniz Magalhaes (McGill)
  2. [154 Downloads]  From Tax Policy to Social Insurance, by Edward Kleinbard (USC)
  3. [149 Downloads]  Important Developments in Federal Income Taxation, by Edward Morse (Creighton)
  4. [142 Downloads]  Wealth Tax Design: Lessons from Estate Tax Avoidance, by Jason Oh (UCLA) & Eric Zolt (UCLA)
  5. [124 Downloads]  The OECD Unified Approach: Nexus, Scope, and Coexisting With DSTs, by Assaf Harpaz (S.J.D. 2020, Duke)

March 22, 2020 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Top 5 Downloads | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, March 21, 2020

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

  1. U.S, News & World Report, Law School Peer Reputation Rankings (And Overall Rankings)
  2. Wall Street Journal, The IRS Proves The Left’s Favorite Economists Wrong:The Rich Really Do Not Pay Lower Taxes Than You
  3. Paul Caron (Dean, Pepperdine), 100% Of Law Schools Have Moved Online Due To The Coronavirus
  4. Bryan Camp (Texas Tech), Lesson From The Tax Court: The Two Postmark Rule And The Rule Of Law
  5. Public Statement of Library Copyright Specialists, Fair Use & Emergency Remote Teaching & Research
  6. Seth Oranburg (Duquesne), Josh Blackman (South Texas), Howard Wasserman (Florida International), and Diane Klein (La Verne), Law Teaching In The Age Of Coronavirus
  7. U.S. News & World Report, 2021 Tax Rankings
  8. U.S. News & World Report, 2021 Business/Corporate Law Rankings
  9. U.S. News & World Report, 2021 Clinical Training Rankings
  10. Paul Caron (Dean, Pepperdine), Pepperdine’s Place In The 2021 U.S. News Law School Rankings

March 21, 2020 in About This Blog, Legal Education, Tax, Weekly Legal Ed Roundup, Weekly Tax Roundup, Weekly Top 10 TaxProf Blog Posts | Permalink | Comments (0)

Book & Ames: The Morass Of The Anti-Injunction Act

Leslie Book (Villanova) & Marilyn Ames (IRS Office of Chief Counsel (retired)), The Morass of the Anti-Injunction Act: a Review of the Cases and Major Issues, 73 Tax Law. ___ (2020):

ABA Tax Lawyer (2019)As Congress gives the Internal Revenue Service more tasks to perform beyond its function of assessing and collecting taxes, courts, practitioners, and academics are struggling to apply the Anti-Injunction Act (AIA) as the IRS promulgates procedures in the course of fulfilling new mandates. The AIA has its origins in the post-Civil War era when the federal government established new procedures ensuring the assessment and collection of taxes. It may seem odd an over 150-year old provision is fueling a growing number of contested and controversial disputes. Yet, the AIA has taken on renewed importance as courts consider challenges to tax regulations and guidance, fueled in part by the increasing importance of administrative law in issues of tax procedure and administration.

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March 21, 2020 in ABA Tax Section, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)