• December 22, 2016

    Taxation With Representation: Cravath, Skadden, Ropes

    This week’s Taxation With Representation sees the formation of a $65 billion industrial gas heavyweight, the $2.8 billion sale of American Railcar Leasing and a $445 million merger between KLR Energy and Tema Oil and Gas.

  • December 22, 2016

    Feds Seek Up To 97 Mos. For Wrigley Rooftop Owner In Fraud

    The owner of a rooftop overlooking Wrigley Field who was convicted of defrauding the Chicago Cubs out of owed royalties should spend 78 to 97 months in prison, prosecutors told an Illinois federal court

  • December 21, 2016

    Texas Newspaper Can't Shake Libel Suit At Appeals Court

    A Corpus Christi newspaper was able to trim some claims brought against it by a businessman who says the paper defamed him, but a Texas state appeals court held Wednesday that some articles did contain “defamatory per se” statements and those claims must remain in the suit.

  • December 21, 2016

    Medical Centers Denied Class Cert. In Tax Refund Dispute

    A Kansas federal judge on Wednesday denied class certification to a group of medical centers claiming the IRS owes them additional interest after they were refunded for overpaying the employer portion of the Federal Insurance Contributions Act tax, finding the court lacked jurisdiction over certain claims.

  • December 21, 2016

    Pa. Contractor Loses Partial Relief On $2M Tax Bill

    A Pennsylvania construction contractor cannot claim exceptions on more than $2 million in sales and use taxes after a state appellate court ruled Wednesday that the road signs the company installed do not qualify as exempt building machinery and equipment.

  • December 21, 2016

    EU Top Court Rules Against Tax Scheme On Foreign Holdings

    The European Court of Justice on Wednesday set aside a lower court’s decision on tax breaks granted to Spanish companies on their foreign holdings when it found that these tax breaks constituted illegal state aid.

  • December 21, 2016

    Gas Exploration Co. Has Gas Rights Via Tax Sale: Pa. Court

    The Pennsylvania Superior Court on Wednesday upheld a decision affirming Range Resources has rights to more than 2,800 acres of subsurface gas in Lycoming County, concluding the landowner who leased the rights to the company properly acquired them via a 1932 tax sale.

  • December 21, 2016

    Irish Airlines On Hook For Tax Breaks Deemed State Aid

    Europe’s largest budget airline, Ryanair, and Aer Lingus are on the hook for millions of dollars in Irish taxes on air travel, after the European Union’s top court affirmed Wednesday that the companies benefited from illegal state aid for short-haul flights.

  • December 21, 2016

    Orbitz Not a Retail Merchant, Indiana Tax Court Says

    The Indiana Tax Court on Tuesday handed a win to Orbitz LLC in its challenge to the state’s tax assessment, finding that the online travel company did not have to collect taxes based on the retail rate of Indiana hotel rooms because Orbtiz is not a retail merchant.

  • December 21, 2016

    Hunt Petroleum Heir Shakes Claims For $10M Gift Tax Refund

    A Texas federal judge on Tuesday temporarily denied a bid from creditors for the heir to the Hunt Petroleum Corp. dynasty for $10.5 million in potential gift tax refunds in connection with a family dispute over trusts, finding that the refund at issue is speculative.

  • December 21, 2016

    Mich. Appeals Court Backs State Decision To Exit Tax Deal

    The Michigan Court of Appeals on Tuesday kept in line with earlier court rulings in finding that a multistate tax compact was not a binding contract, rejecting Solo Cup Operating Corp.’s challenge to Michigan’s decision to withdraw from the accord. 

  • December 20, 2016

    Obama's Treasury Chief Warns Trump On Tax Cuts

    Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew warned the incoming Trump administration on Tuesday that it will have to either cut spending or raise taxes if it makes economic decisions that widen the fiscal deficit.

  • December 20, 2016

    Chevron, Exxon, Others Denied $500M Tax Refund In Alaska

    Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil and Forest Oil lost their bid for a $500 million production tax refund when the Alaska Supreme Court recently ruled that the state revenue department could reach a common-sense interpretation of the relevant tax statute without issuing new regulations.

  • December 20, 2016

    Alcan Gets Partial Win On Tax Deductions For $73M In Fees

    A Canadian aluminum mining company scored a partial win on tax deductions for more than CA$97 million ($72.66 million) in expenses related to a corporate restructuring after the Tax Court of Canada ruled that a substantial portion of fees paid to advisers qualify as deductible ongoing expenses.

  • December 20, 2016

    Colo. Gov. Asks Judge To Toss Challenge To Tax Measure

    Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has asked a federal judge to toss a challenge to the state’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights, arguing that the none groups behind the lawsuit — citizens, educators and political subdivisions — can show concrete injury traced back to the bill.

  • December 20, 2016

    Atty Must Declare Income He Used For Firm, Tax Court Says

    A Doar Rieck DeVita Kaley & Mack partner can’t shake an income tax deficiency notice and related $28,000 penalty, the U.S. Tax Court ruled Monday, rejecting the attorney’s contention that he didn’t have to report income he used to cover his firm’s expenses.

  • December 19, 2016

    KPMG Can't Shake Ron Burkle's $10M Blown Tax Shelter Suit

    A California judge on Monday rejected KPMG's bid for a quick win in billionaire Ron Burkle's $10 million suit alleging the accounting firm led him to invest in tax shelters the state rejected, ruling there are disputed facts about when KPMG knew it was giving bad advice.

  • December 19, 2016

    DOT Urges Discovery Bid Denial In Fla. Rail Bond Challenge

    The U.S. Department of Transportation on Sunday urged a federal court to deny two Florida counties' motions for hastened jurisdictional discovery in a challenge to the DOT's approval of $1.75 billion in tax-exempt bonds for a Miami-to-Orlando passenger railroad, saying they haven’t proved the additional discovery is appropriate.

  • December 19, 2016

    Deloitte Survey Shows Most CFOs Welcome Trump's Tax Plan

    More than 70 percent of chief financial officers polled by Deloitte LLP said that President-elect Donald Trump’s proposed tax plan would be good for their companies, while the results were more mixed on whether the plan would be good for the country, according to survey results released Monday.

  • December 19, 2016

    House GOP Committed To Hiking Taxes On Imports, Rep Says

    U.S. companies that rely on imports will “have to adjust” to a House Republican plan that would boost taxes on those goods while lessening the burden on exports, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee said Sunday.

Expert Analysis

  • Merging Law Firms: Think Before You Tie The Knot

    John Remsen Jr.

    Getting larger isn’t a good enough reason to merge. Focus on whether the merger will make your firm better. Also, it’s possible that a merger can reduce profitability, says John Remsen Jr. of TheRemsenGroup.

  • Merging Law Firms: Why Deals Fail Or Underperform

    Lisa Smith

    While many law firm mergers have been successful, some have been spectacularly unsuccessful — to the point of firm dissolution. Some have exceeded expectations, while others have had little impact on the overall competitiveness of the combined firm. In both failed discussions and less-than-successful mergers, there are mistakes that are made along the way, says Lisa Smith of Fairfax Associates.

  • What To Expect From The New Senate

    Kay Bailey Hutchison

    A word of caution to our fellow Republicans — one lesson learned from President Obama’s first two years in office is that pushing through partisan legislation could come back to haunt a party and a presidency, say former Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, and Curt Beaulieu of Bracewell LLP.

  • Merging Law Firms: Beware Conflicts Of Interest

    Allison Martin Rhodes

    Among the many ethical issues that can arise, conflicts of interest from current or past representation of each firm’s clients should be at the forefront of merger discussions. Recently, we have seen such conflicts disqualify firms in the middle of high-cost litigation, say Allison Martin Rhodes of Holland & Knight LLP and Robert Hillman of the University of California, Davis.

  • Man Vs. Machine: Or, Lawyers Vs. Legal Technology

    Abdi Shayesteh

    Some have claimed that emerging legal technologies and increasingly cost-conscious clients will mean the extinction of the legal profession as we know it. However, innovations in legal technology may actually benefit attorneys, allowing them to spend their time doing more meaningful work, say Abdi Shayesteh and Elnaz Zarrini of AltaClaro.

  • In Congress: Lame Duck Session

    Richard Hertling

    Following a six-week recess for the contentious campaign season leading up to an outcome that surprised most in Washington, members of the 114th Congress return this week to begin the lame duck session. Beyond the politics and organizing for next year, this session will be dominated by two “must-pass” items of legislation, according to Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • OPINION: The Verdict — A Rejection Of Politics As Usual

    Reuben Guttman

    The verdict on Nov. 8, was not unanimous, especially when Secretary Hillary Clinton will end up with a popular vote advantage. Yet, it is a message of extreme magnitude from voters willing to overlook the serious flaws of a candidate because they could not reconcile themselves to ratifying the perpetuation of politics as usual, says Reuben Guttman, a partner of Guttman Buschner & Brooks PLLC and adjunct professor at Emory Law School.

  • Tax Case Shows IRS’ Dogged Pursuit Of Trust Fund Penalty

    Douglas Charnas

    The taxpayer in a recent U.S. Tax Court case was the wife of a passive investor of the employer corporation, but had no control over its finances, no ownership interest, no authority to hire and fire, and no real decision-making power. Yet the Internal Revenue Service assessed her for a trust fund recovery penalty — illustrating how aggressive the IRS has become on this subject, says Douglas W. Charnas of McGuire Woods LLP.

  • Merging Law Firms: Why Hogan Lovells Has Worked

    J. Warren Gorrell Jr.

    As shown by the impending merger between Arnold & Porter LLP and Kaye Scholer LLP, consolidation in the legal industry remains a popular strategy among firms looking to boost revenue and acquire new clients. J. Warren Gorrell Jr., a key architect of the 2010 merger that created Hogan Lovells, reflects on his own experience and why mergers of equals are particularly difficult.

  • Marijuana Tipping Point: California And Florida Lead The Way

    Robbins, Jonathan.JPG

    Last week's election will be viewed as a turning point in the emergence of new economies centered around marijuana. Ballot initiatives around the country resulted in important changes in eight states — with four legalizing adult recreational use of marijuana and another four legalizing medicinal use. Two of the most notable developments are in California and Florida, say Jonathan Robbins and Joshua Mandell of Akerman LLP.