• 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.

  • December 19, 2016

    Med Device Co. Can't Claim Extra Investment Grant

    A U.S. Tax Court judge sided with the Internal Revenue Service Monday in upholding tax liability against a small medical device company trying to hold on to a cash grant for investing in medical research, a grant the judge said it wasn't certified to receive.

  • December 19, 2016

    Medical Laser Co. Lensar Hits Ch. 11 After IP Settlement

    Laser eye surgery equipment maker Lensar Inc. filed for Chapter 11 protection in Delaware late Friday, about a month after settling a patent fight with federal research facility Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and hoping to preserve roughly $100 million in net-operating-loss tax assets for its restructuring.

  • December 19, 2016

    The Biggest Native American Law Rulings Of 2016

    The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s lawsuit and protests over the Dakota Access pipeline dominated headlines in the latter half of 2016, but a D.C. Circuit ruling on the government’s land-into-trust process and U.S. Supreme Court decisions on tribal court authority, taxation and the use of tribal convictions in federal domestic violence prosecutions also made major marks this year.

  • December 19, 2016

    Philly Judge Junks City Soda Tax Challenge

    Philadelphia’s controversial tax on sugar-sweetened beverages survived its first major legal challenge on Monday when a trial judge agreed to dismiss a lawsuit claiming that the levy improperly usurped the state’s taxation authority.

Expert Analysis

  • 7 Steps For Managing An Associate Who May Be Impaired

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    According to a recent study on the prevalence of attorney addiction and mental health concerns, more than one-third of practicing attorneys in the U.S. qualify as problem drinkers and 28 percent struggle with depression. While change in large law firms can be slow, there is a lot firms can do to navigate situations where an associate’s performance may be impaired, says Stacey Saada Schwartz, a former litigator and Los Angeles-based... (continued)

  • QinetiQ Tests APA's Application To Tax Deficiency Notices

    Roger Jones

    The outcome of QinetiQ U.S. Holdings Inc. v. Commissioner could have far-reaching implications if the Fourth Circuit accepts the taxpayer’s Administrative Procedure Act argument. A holding that the APA requires that notices of tax deficiency contain more explanation could add to the workload of an already log-jammed and thin-staffed IRS, say members of McDermott Will & Emery.

  • The Role Of Litigation Analytics In Your Case

    Thomas C. Gricks III

    Lawyers often use analytics in the course of an e-discovery review for production, where these tools help them assign documents into buckets such as “relevant” or “privileged.” Increasingly, lawyers are using analytics to see if there is anything unusual within the collection and if there are stories the documents can tell, say Thomas Gricks, Bayu Hardi and Mark Noel of Catalyst Repository Systems.

  • Adapt Or Die: Law Firms In Tomorrow's Economy — Part 5

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    The clarion call from the top of Corporate America over the past several years to its workers to do more with less, eliminate redundancy, and work cooperatively across disciplines toward the goal of corporate profitability is reaching BigLaw, says Jill Dessalines, founder of Strategic Advice for Successful Lawyers and former assistant general counsel of McKesson Corp.

  • When Brain Cancer Is Not Reasonable Cause For Late Filing

    Stephen Olsen

    In Specht v. United States, the Sixth Circuit upheld penalties for failure to timely file and pay estate tax. This case presented a terrible set of circumstances for the executor, but is a good example of how difficult arguing the reasonable cause exception to delinquency penalties can be, if the delinquency was based on relying on an attorney to file, says Stephen Olsen of Gawthrop Greenwood PC.

  • 4 Ways To Get Associates Trial-Ready

    Stephen B. Crain

    For young trial associates who want to evolve into young trial lawyers, getting the necessary experience is increasingly challenging. The only surefire way associates can become first chair advocates is through effective mentoring, and the best way to achieve effective mentoring is to incorporate it in your approach to cases, say Stephen Crain and Drew Taggart of Bracewell LLP.

  • Adapt Or Die: Law Firms In Tomorrow's Economy — Part 4

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    Compensation isn't what it used to be — and never will be again, says Jill Dessalines, founder of Strategic Advice for Successful Lawyers and former assistant general counsel of McKesson Corp.

  • Adapt Or Die: Law Firms In Tomorrow's Economy — Part 3

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    In part 3 of this series on law firm evolution, Jill Dessalines, founder of Strategic Advice for Successful Lawyers and former assistant general counsel of McKesson Corp., addresses the problem of ad hoc client development and the challenge of associate training.

  • When Your Client Is The President: Part 8

    Robert Bauer

    It is natural in an environment like the White House, particularly for lawyers who have an active interest in public life, to wish to be in every conversation, on any topic, of general interest or major importance. It is a trap, says Perkins Coie LLP partner Robert Bauer, who served as White House counsel for President Barack Obama.

  • Adapt Or Die: Law Firms In Tomorrow's Economy — Part 2

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    Despite the fact that many corporate clients are demanding deviations from the billable hour, and the fact that there are more varieties of alternate fee arrangements than ever before, the billable hour is still here. But it is gasping for breath, says Jill Dessalines, founder of Strategic Advice for Successful Lawyers and former assistant general counsel of McKesson Corp.