Taxpayer’s Brief Filed in Container

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October 28, 2010

The taxpayer has filed its answering brief in Container (attached below), arguing that guarantee fees paid to its Mexican parent were properly analogized to a payment for services and therefore sourced to Mexico.  The taxpayer reasons that the government’s analogy to interest on a loan is misdirected because the guarantor does not advance any funds.  All it does is “stand[ ] by to pay,” which is in the nature of a service, and it is the Mexican parent’s assets – located in Mexico – that give it the ability to serve as a guarantor.  The taxpayer also maintains that the … Read More

Briefing Completed in Castle Harbour (Again)

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October 22, 2010

On October 15, 2010, the government filed its reply brief in TIFD III-E Inc. v. United States, No. 10-70 (2d Cir.) (“Castle Harbour”).  The brief is linked below.  For our prior coverage of the case, see here and here.

In its reply, the government contends that I.R.C. section 704(e)(1) is inapplicable to the facts of the case, and that the provision only applies in the family partnership context, where parties are related.  The government asserts that section 704(e)(1) was not intended to apply, and indeed has never before been applied (and upheld) to an arm’s length transaction between … Read More

Government Argues for Abandoning the Muffler Dealers Test for Deference to IRS Regulations

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October 20, 2010

In our initial post on the Mayo Foundation case pending in the Supreme Court, which concerns whether medical residents are exempt from FICA taxation, we noted that the case potentially raised a broad question that has surfaced in the courts of appeals and the Tax Court in recent years – namely, whether Chevron deference principles have supplanted the traditional Muffler Dealers approach to analyzing the deference owed to Treasury regulations.  Although that issue was not flagged by the parties at the certiorari stage, we later observed that the taxpayers’ opening merits brief served that ball into the government’s court by … Read More

Briefing Completed in Quality Stores

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October 4, 2010

As we previously reported, a district court in Michigan disagreed with the Federal Circuit’s decision in CSX Corp. v. United States, 518 F.3d 1328 (2008) (opinion linked here), and held that severance payments paid to employees pursuant to an involuntary reduction in force are not “wages” for FICA tax purposes.  The employer, Quality Stores, has now filed its answering brief in the Sixth Circuit defending the district court opinion and addressing the arguments made by the government in its opening brief, and the government has filed its reply brief.  (The briefs are attached below.)

The employer’s main … Read More