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The Federal Definition of Tax Partnership

Bradley T. Borden
I. INTRODUCTION “When an entity must be classified for purposes of a Federal income tax statute, policy considerations of Federal income tax law should govern that classification . . . .”[1] Thus spoke the Tax Court, honoring federal income tax policy with its pen, but remaining far from it in application.[2] In fact, although the federal definition of tax[3] partnership has been at issue in over 150 statutes,...
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The Mysteries of Erroneous Refunds

Bryan T. Camp
I love my yearly tax refund. I know I'm not supposed to, but I do. Theorists argue that my refund represents an interest-free loan to the government and I am supposed to resent that for reasons grounded in the obsessive individualism of our culture. But even accepting the argument's premise, the value to me of that yearly manifestation of my forced savings outweighs the value of the interest I would theoretically earn...
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Does The Tax Law Discriminate Against the Majority of American Children: the Downside of Our Progressive Rate Structure and Unbalanced Incentives For Higher Education?

Lester Snyder
Abstract Our graduate income tax structure provides an incentive to shift income to lower-bracket family members. However, some parents have much more latitude to shift income to their children than do others. Income derived from services and private business-by far the majority of American income -is less favored than income derived from publicly traded securities. The rationale given for this discrimination is that...
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Judicial Decisions as Tax Legislation

Nancy Staudt
Written by: Nancy C. Staudt[*] René Lindstaedt and Jason O’Connor ABSTRACT This article provides a new understanding of the Court-Congress dynamic. It responds to an important literature that for several decades now has misconstrued inter- branch relations as fraught with antagonism, hostility, and distrust. This unfriendly dynamic, it is argued, is evidenced by the repeated congressional overrides of Supreme...
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Fiscal Policy Instruments for Reducing Congestion and Atmospheric Emissions in the Transport Sector: a Review

Govinda Timilsina
Written by: Govinda R. Timilsina and Hari B. Dulal 1. Introduction Fiscal instruments are primarily price-based instruments that take advantage of market mechanisms and work through prices (Acutt and Dodgson, 1997). These instruments include: congestion charge or toll tax, emission and/or pollution tax or charge (e.g., carbon tax, sulfur tax), fuel tax (e.g., any excise tax on fuel or a BTU tax), vehicle tax (e.g.,...
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Elephant in the Parlor: Repeal of Stepup in Basis at Death

Calvin Johnson
This proposal would end the step-up in basis for property acquired by reason of the death of another individual and increase the tax on inherited property when it is sold. The exemption for built-in gain at death is unfair because it allows consumption, even sumptuous consumption of investments by heirs, without either the heir or original owner paying tax on the consumption.[1] Under normal patterns, tax on heirs...
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An Employer-Level Proxy Tax on Fringe Benefits

Calvin Johnson
A. Overview When nontaxable substitutes for cash are available, an employer and employee working in concert will inevitably shift compensation away from cash to the untaxed form. Goods and services are usually less convenient and less valuable to the employee than cash. Still, as long as the value lost is less than the tax avoided, the employer and employee will continue the shift. Taxing the cash substitute as well...
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Voluntary disclosure of offshore accounts

Burton J. Haynes
Things are getting ever more uncomfortable for U.S. taxpayers holding undisclosed offshore bank and investment accounts. And in the wake of the very public fight between the Internal Revenue Service and Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS), it is quite possible that one of your clients will reveal to you that he has an offshore account he "forgot" to mention. Your advice to such a client will need to be informed by an...
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Slinking Away From Twinkie Taxes

Joel Newman
‘‘A tax can be a means for raising revenue, or a device for regulating conduct, or both.’’ — Felix Frankfurter[1] ‘‘Frankly, I think government shouldn’t have a darn thing to do with what we sell or how our customers eat. As long as it is safe, tastes good and is fair priced, why should the mayor care?’’ — Frances Sack, operating partner, Dalessandro’s, a chain of cheesesteak restaurants in...
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No Deductions for Tax Planning And Controversy Costs

Calvin Johnson
Tax planning and tax litigation are too profitable for the taxpayer. The tax accounting for tax planning and controversy work allows an exemption for the reduction in tax achieved by the costs and also generally allows a deduction for the costs of the work. The mismatch of the exemption of the benefit and deduction of the costs gives a negative tax or subsidy. Costs that would routinely be profitable under neutral tax...
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