Freedom From Religion Foundation Inc. et al. v. Jacob Lew et al.; No. 3:11-cv-00626,
“Although I conclude that § 107(2) violates the establishment clause and must be enjoined, this does not mean that the government is powerless to enact tax exemptions that benefit religion. “[P]olicies providing incidental benefits to religion do not contravene the Establishment Clause.” Capitol Square Review & Advisory Board v. Pinette, 515 U.S. 753, 768 (1995) (plurality opinion). In particular, because “[t]he nonsectarian aims of government and the interests of religious groups often overlap,” the government is not “required [to] refrain from implementing reasonable measures to advance legitimate secular goals merely because they would thereby relieve religious groups of costs they would otherwise incur.” Texas Monthly, 489 U.S. at 10 (plurality opinion). Thus, if Congress believes that there are important secular reasons for granting the exemption in § 107(2), it is free to rewrite the provision in accordance with the principles laid down in Texas Monthly and Walz so that it includes ministers as part of a larger group of beneficiaries. Haller, 728 A.2d at 356 (noting that Texas amended statute at issue in Texas Monthly to grant sales tax exemption to broader range of groups). As it stands now, however, § 107(2) is unconstitutional.”
Colleen C. Cheramie v. Commissioner; T.C. Summ. Op. 2013-92, Filed, November 20, 2013
“The 2006 consent judgment did not allocate any amount or percentage of Mr. Cheramie’s payments to petitioner or to third parties on petitioner’s behalf as child support. Therefore, the amounts received by and on behalf of petitioner are not child support, but are alimony income to petitioner. See sec. 71(c)(1); see also Kean v. Commissioner, 407 F.3d at 192; sec. 1.71-1(e), Income Tax Regs. Thus, section 71(c) is satisfied.”
Christopher DeFrancis et ux. v. Commissioner; T.C. Summ. Op. 2013-88, Filed November 6, 2013
“Since the mortgage was not recorded, we consider whether the mortgage was otherwise perfected under Massachusetts law. See sec. 1.163-10T(o)(1)(iii), Temporary Income Tax Regs., supra. The mortgage may be valid and enforceable under State law as between petitioners and Joan Gross (Parent of wife). See Mass. Ann. Laws ch. 183, sec. 4. Petitioners have not, however, established that the mortgage was otherwise perfected under Massachusetts law. We are not persuaded that the mortgage qualifies as a secured debt for tax purposes simply because it may be valid under State law between Joan Gross and petitioners. Thus, petitioners have not satisfied the third element of a secured debt under the regulations requiring that the mortgage be recorded or otherwise perfected under applicable State law. See sec. 1.163-10T(o)(1)(iii), Temporary Income Tax Regs., supra.
David A. Hoelscher et ux. v. Commissioner; T.C. Memo. 2013-236, Filed October 22, 2013
“Mrs. Hoelscher testified that petitioners “just keep chugging along, trying to make something work”, yet they did not take any meaningful action to reduce expenses or increase revenue. See sec. 1.183-2(b)(1), Income Tax Regs. Indeed, they had no plan to achieve profitability. Mrs. Hoelscher likened her quixotic goal, of breeding a championship horse, to “winning the lottery”. Petitioners are sophisticated and successful in business but did not conduct the ranching activity in a businesslike manner. See id. They did not keep an inventory of the animals on WCR; maintain insurance relating to WCR (Whiskey Canyon Ranch) or their livestock; or prepare a written business plan, budget, or projection of future profitability.”
Because the ranching activity was not for profit none of the losses were deductible. Because of the magnitude of the losses claimed the taxpayers, (From 1994 through 2009, petitioners reported gross income, expenses, and losses totaling $1,073,284, $11,011,866, and $9,938,582, respectively, relating to the ranching activity) they were also subject to the accuracy-related penalty under section 6662.
Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) New power point prentation on DOMA and Windsor and Rev. Rul 2013-17
IRS Rev. Proc. 2013-34
SECTION 1. PURPOSE AND SCOPE
.01 Purpose. This revenue procedure provides guidance for a taxpayer seeking equitable relief from income tax liability under section 66(c) or section 6015(f) of the Internal Revenue Code (a “requesting spouse”). Section 4.01 of this revenue procedure provides the threshold requirements for any request for equitable relief. Section 4.02 of this revenue procedure sets forth the conditions under which the Internal Revenue Service will make streamlined relief determinations granting equitable relief under section 6015(f) from an understatement of income tax or an underpayment of income tax reported on a joint return, or the operation of community property law under section 66(c). Section 4.03 of this revenue procedure provides a nonexclusive list of factors for consideration in determining whether relief should be granted under section 6015(f) because it would be inequitable to hold a requesting spouse jointly and severally liable when the conditions of section 4.02 are not met. The factors in section 4.03 also will apply in determining whether to relieve a spouse from income tax liability resulting from the operation of community property law under the equitable relief provision of section 66(c).\
.02 Scope. This revenue procedure applies to spouses who request either equitable relief from joint and several liability under section 6015(f), or equitable relief under section 66(c) from income tax liability resulting from the operation of community property law.
Rev, Rule 2013-17
The IRS has issued a ruling that recognizes validly entered marriages (foreign or domestic) of same-sex couples.
1. For Federal tax purposes, the terms “spouse,” “husband and wife,” “husband,” and “wife” include an individual married to a person of the same sex if the individuals are lawfully married under state law, and the term “marriage” includes such a marriage between individuals of the same sex.
2. For Federal tax purposes, the Service adopts a general rule recognizing a marriage of same-sex individuals that was validly entered into in a state whose laws authorize the marriage of two individuals of the same sex even if the married couple is domiciled in a state that does not recognize the validity of same-sex marriages.
3. For Federal tax purposes, the terms “spouse,” “husband and wife,” “husband,” and “wife” do not include individuals (whether of the opposite sex or the same sex) who have entered into a registered domestic partnership, civil union, or other similar formal relationship recognized under state law that is not denominated as a marriage under the laws of that state, and the term “marriage” does not include such formal relationships.”