The Hill Extra interviewed TEI Tax Counsel Pilar Mata and covered TEI's State Tax Havens Policy Statement in a recent article regarding state tax haven legislation. The article notes that although only six states and the District of Columbia have enacted such legislation to date, other states are likely to follow suit in upcoming legislative sessions. The article also notes that state tax haven laws raise many constitutional questions and referenced TEI's policy statement on state tax haven legislation, which was issued on June 15, 2016.
TEI Comments on § 385 Proposed Regulations Allowing IRS to Recharacterize Related-Party Debt to Equity
On July 6, 2016, TEI submitted comments to the Internal Revenue Service regarding its proposed regulations for 26 U.S.C. § 385, which would give the IRS broad authority to recharacterize related-party debt to equity. We submitted these comments pursuant to the REG-108060-15 notice of proposed rulemaking. The comments discuss the negative macroeconomic effects the proposed regulations could have, the technical tax complexities they would create for corporate taxpayers, and suggested changes Treasury and IRS should make to the proposed regulations before finalizing them.
On February 16, 2016, TEI submitted comments to the Internal Revenue Service offering a definition of "minor assembly" for purposes of the domestic production activities deduction ("DPAD") of 26 U.S.C. § 199. We submitted these comments pursuant to the REG-136459-09 notice of proposed rulemaking, which proposed various changes in the regulations surrounding the DPAD. These comments also offered an alternative new Example 9 from what was suggested in REG-136459-09, an example generally regarding as attempting to overturn by regulation the holding in United States v. Dean, 945 F. Supp.
TEI Urges FASB to Withdraw Proposed Updates Requiring Disclosure of Government Assistance Agreements
On February 10, 2016, TEI submitted a comment letter to the Financial Accounting Standards Board concerning the FASB's proposal to require public disclosure of material terms and conditions of government assistance agreements.
TEI Requests CRA Include Employer-Provided Gift Cards in Policy of Not Including Value of Small Gifts as Income to Employees
On February 9, 2016, TEI submitted a letter to the Canadian Revenue Agency recommending that certain employer-provided gift cards be included in the CRA's policy of not including small employer-provided gifts as income to employees. The letter discusses why including gift cards into this policy increases choices for recipient employees and maintains the policy’s purpose of reducing the administrative burdens on employers who would otherwise have to track the value of such gift cards for tax purposes.
On October 13, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an order following TEI's recommendation to issue a "GVR order" in First Marblehead v. Massachusetts Commissioner of Revenue. First Marblehead involves the proper apportionment of financial institution's income under Massachusetts' financial institutions excise tax under the dormant Commerce Clause.
On May 18, 2015, the United States Supreme Court issued a decision in Comptroller v. Wynne, holding that Maryland's personal income tax- which did not offer its residents a full credit for income taxes paid to other states on income they earned in those states - was unconstitutional. The majority opinion (5-4), authored by Justice Alito, held that the tax violated the dormant Commerce Clause because it discriminated against interstate commerce. Justices Scalia, Thomas, and Ginsburg authored dissenting opinions on varying grounds.