Many real estate investors hoping for clarity on whether they will be eligible for the tax break for pass-through entities under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) will be disappointed that guidance from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will not help much for projects leased on a triple-net basis. Read Marvin A. Kirsner’s article for the Daily Business Review, “Final IRS Guidance for Rental Deduction Still Leaves Triple Net Leases Out in the Cold.” (subscription).
Law360 recently published an article by Greenberg Traurig’s Barbara T. Kaplan, Michelle Ferreira, and Jennifer Vincent, titled “Prepare For Greater IRS Scrutiny On Conservation Easements.” While the Internal Revenue Service has been focused on syndicated conservation easements for over 10 years, earlier this year IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig announced several campaign issues on which the IRS would heighten its focus. These campaigns included compliance in the areas of cryptocurrency, syndicated conservation easements, captive insurance companies, offshore filings and more. To read the full article, please click here.
While the IRS has been cracking down on syndicated conservation easements for over ten years, earlier this year Chuck Rettig, the Commissioner of the IRS, announced several campaign areas upon which the IRS would heighten focus in the coming year. Following through on this promise, on Nov. 12, 2019, the IRS announced a significant increase in enforcement actions for syndicated conservation easements in Issue Number IR-2019-182. This GT Alert explains what a syndicated conservation easement is and discusses how the IRS is now throwing significant resources behind the hunt for these transactions.
In South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc., et al., 138 S. Ct. 2080 (decided June 21, 2018), the Supreme Court of the United States held that physical presence in a state was not necessary for retailers to be required to collect and remit state sales and use tax. Many states, including New York, have passed statutes implementing that decision. On Nov. 5, 2019, the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance issued TSB-M-19(4)S, providing guidance for businesses making sales of tangible personal property delivered in New York.
The Amsterdam office of global law firm Greenberg Traurig, LLP represented InterXion (NYSE: INXN), a leading European provider of cloud- and carrier-neutral colocation data center services, in a business combination with Digital Realty (NYSE: DLR). The transaction values InterXion at approximately USD 93.48 per share or USD 8.4 billion of total enterprise value in an all-stock deal, based on Digital Realty’s closing price on Monday.
This strategic transaction is the largest in the history of the data center industry and will position the combined company as a leading global provider of data center solutions with enhanced presence in major European metropolitan areas. Completion of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including approval by shareholders of InterXion and Digital Realty.
On Oct. 9, 2019, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released revenue ruling (Rev. Rul. 2019-24) and a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) document, which provide additional guidance on the tax treatment and reporting obligations for transactions involving virtual currency (also known as cryptocurrency). This guidance supplements the original guidance that was issued in 2014 in the form of a notice (Notice 2014-21), which provides a baseline rule that cryptocurrency is property for federal income tax purposes.
Rev. Rul. 2019-24 addresses questions related to the tax treatment of hard forks. The revenue ruling describes a hard fork as a protocol change that results in a permanent split of a new distributive ledger from a legacy or existing distributed ledger, resulting in the creation of a new cryptocurrency on the new distributed ledger in addition to the legacy cryptocurrency on the legacy distributed ledger. Continue Reading
Greenberg Traurig recently sponsored the 2019 Samsung Gives Charity Gala in New York City. With hundreds of guests in attendance, including musicians, athletes, and celebrities, this program is dedicated to celebrating worthy causes, furthering community impact, and honoring organizations and the people who work so hard every single day to make the world a better place.
On Sept. 16, 2019, the IRS announced it is offering settlements to certain taxpayers with open audits of micro-captive insurance transactions. The IRS has targeted these micro-captive insurance transactions since 2014, and they were designated as transactions of interest in 2016.1 Although micro-captive insurance transactions have gained popularity among closely held entities, the IRS has challenged such transactions as abusive, stating that they “are inconsistent with arm’s length transactions and sound business practices.”2
Following several IRS victories in the U.S. Tax Court, the IRS decided to offer settlements to taxpayers currently under examination and mailed settlement letters to up to 200 such taxpayers. This action was not unexpected given the IRS’s three recent victories, described below, and the rash of docketed cases in the Tax Court on this issue. A settlement initiative such as this one represents an effort to deal with the volume of cases. The initiative will resolve more cases without litigation and will produce finality for those accepting the fixed settlement terms.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) publishes monthly the applicable federal rates (AFRs) under Internal Revenue Code (Code) Section 1274(d) and the Code Section 7520 rate (7520 rate) for the month following the month in which the Revenue Ruling is published in a Revenue Ruling that is released around the 18th day of the immediately preceding month. Advance knowledge of the AFRs and 7520 rate for the following month provides a window of opportunity for the immediate or delayed implementation of income, gift, and estate-tax planning techniques in response to upward or downward trends. Effective implementation and management of interest-sensitive estate planning techniques involves numerous other factors in addition to the relevant AFR or the 7520 rate, including a client’s particular personal and financial circumstances, and should be undertaken only with the advice of competent tax counsel and financial advisors.
The IRS has issued Revenue Ruling 2019-23, which provides the AFRs and 7520 rate for October 2019. Revenue Ruling 2019-23 will appear in Internal Revenue Bulletin 2019-41 dated Oct. 7, 2019. The downward trend that began in January 2019 continues, with all AFRs and the 7520 rate at or below 1.86% for October 2019. Continue Reading
The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act provided a 100% first year write-off for many types of capital expenditures. Congressional tax writers intended this benefit to be available for leasehold improvements, which would be a boon to retail and restaurant businesses and their landlords. Unfortunately, in the rush to get the tax bill pushed through, there was a legislative drafting error that caused leasehold improvements to be left out of the definition of expenditures eligible for this tax benefit. Worse yet, leasehold improvements were given a longer write-off period (39 years) than under the prior law (15 years).