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Tag Archives: Taxation

Taxation – Public Utilities – ‘Telephone Company’ – Cell Phone Service Providers – Statutory Ambiguity (access required)

Alltel Communications, Inc. v. South Carolina Department of Revenue S.C. Code Ann. § 12-20-100 imposes higher license fees on certain companies, including every “telephone company.” Since the statute does not define “telephone company”, it is ambiguous. We construe the ambiguity in favor of the petitioner-taxpayers – cellular telephone service providers – and rule that the statute does not apply to petitioners.

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Taxation – Corporate – Business Sale – Back Taxes – Buyer’s Obligation (access required)

Starnes v. Comm’r of Internal Revenue Four former owners of a trucking business who sold their stake to a company that in turn sold it to another buyer, without following through on an agreement to pay taxes the former owners owed on the sale proceeds, do not have to pay the back taxes to the IRS; the 4th Circuit upholds a Tax Court decision that the IRS could not collect from the former owners because, under the controlling state law, a creditor of the buyer company could not recover on the buyer’s company debts.

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Taxation – Subdivision Association – Parking Lot & Beach Club – Net Income – Private Interests (access required)

Ocean Pines Ass’n Inc. v. Comm’r of Internal Revenue A tax-exempt subdivision association must pay taxes on net income from two parking lots and a beach club that benefit the private interests of association members rather than the general public; the 4th Circuit affirms the Tax Court judgment, as the income is not “substantially related” to the association purpose of promoting social welfare, but is taxable as “unrelated business taxable income.”

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