How to Correct Late Accounting Method Changes

Houston Tax Attorney

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A consistent mistake on a tax return for more than two years may require an accounting method change to correct. The IRS has procedures for making these elections, which generally require a timely filed tax return. But what if you miss the filing deadline–are you out of luck? Private Letter Ruling (“PLR”) 201850013 provides the […]

Can Defective Deed Defeat IRS Estate Tax Lien?

Houston Tax Attorney

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The IRS lien is broad and attaches to the taxpayer’s property. Creative tax attorneys have tried to find ways around the lien with limited success. The recent Saccullo v. United States, No. 17-14546 (11th Cir. 2019) case raises the question as to whether a defectively executed deed be used to defeat the IRS’s estate tax […]

Can Foreign Government Use U.S. Court to Collect From U.S. Person?

Houston Tax Attorney

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If a U.S. person commits tax fraud under the laws of a foreign county, can the foreign country’s tax collector use the U.S. court system to collect from the U.S. person? The court recently addressed this in In re SKAT Tax Refund Scheme Litigation, No. 18-md-2865 (LAK) (S.D.N.Y. 2019). Facts & Procedural History The plaintiff […]

Retaining Rights With a Charitable Conservation Easement

Houston Tax Attorney

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Conservation easements can result in significant charitable deductions for real estate owners and investors. But can an owner or investor retain rights to the property and still get the charitable deduction. The courts continue to define when this is possible. The Pine Mountain Preserve LLLP v. Commissioner, 151 T.C. 14, case is the latest case […]

Statements Made to IRS Special Agents

Houston Tax Attorney

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If you are contacted by an IRS special agent for an informal meeting, can statements made during the meeting be used against you in court? The answer is “maybe.” The court addresses this in United States v. Henry, No. 2017-0001 (D. VI 2018). Facts & Procedural History The IRS criminal investigation unit received a tip […]

Appropriate a Book of Business, Capital or Ordinary Gain?

Houston Tax Attorney

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If an investment advisor is terminated by the bank he works for and the bank keeps the advisors book of business, is the bank compensating the investment advisor for the sale of his book of business or is it paying compensation for services? One would seem to produce capital gain and the other ordinary gain. […]

Innocent Spouse Relief for One’s Own Income

Houston Tax Attorney

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While taxpayers are often aware that innocent spouse relief can eliminate their liability for tax on items of income earned by their spouse (or ex-spouse), fewer taxpayers realize that innocent spouse relief can also help with tax on income they earned themselves. The recent Heydon-Grauss v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2018-209, case provides an opportunity to […]