Legal Defense Fund Donations Should Get Gift Tax Treatment

Law360 (November 18, 2020, 6:36 PM EST) -- Legal defense funds for executive branch officials are back in the news, but a number of tax and government ethics issues raised since the Clinton administration have never been fully resolved. The current ambiguities are not sustainable.

They will lead to aggressive planning by individuals and protracted disputes over the treatment of legal defense funds in the context of politically weaponized litigation, all prospects that are in no one's long-term interest. Fortunately, there is a path forward that should work, even though it will not satisfy everyone.

With the change in government, there will almost certainly be an increase in civil...

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