Tax Analysts Blog

Wednesday, January 14, 2015
The Illinois Policy Institute recently filed a lawsuit to challenge a common practice at the state and local level: tying tax credits to the retention of jobs. The suit alleges that businesses should receive tax credits under the Edge Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) program only if they cr...
Wednesday, January 7, 2015
A recent article in State Tax Notes details some transparency concerns at the Mississippi Department of Revenue that are (unfortunately) somewhat commonplace. For example, the department does not publish letter rulings, which can be useful in helping taxpayers understand the risk associated with a...
Monday, December 29, 2014
Online crowdfunding has turned into a mainstream concept. It has enabled people to raise millions of dollars to start businesses or fund projects. For business entrepreneurs, it is a revolutionary solution to a big problem. That is, they need money, but private equity and venture capital firms won...
Wednesday, December 17, 2014
On December 15 State Tax Notes released its annual Person of the Year issue. It's a fun issue for the magazine staff. We get to take a break from the news of the day to think back about what happened during the year. Of course, that often leads to a discussion of what might happen in the coming ye...
Wednesday, December 3, 2014
The Washington State Wire recently published several articles addressing concerns about the internal appeals process at the Washington Department of Revenue. The articles provide an interesting look at how the process works – or doesn't work. One of the articles, published on November 24, raises...
Wednesday, November 26, 2014
There has been an uptick in the enforcement of nonresident income taxes and employers and employees should expect this trend to continue. Historically, there has always been a significant amount of noncompliance regarding nonresident income taxes, both in terms of payroll withholding by employers a...
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
On November 12 State Budget Solutions issued new research showing the level at which state public pension plans are underfunded, and it's not good news. In 2013 state pension plans were underfunded by a staggering $4.1 trillion. In 2014 that number has risen to $4.7 trillion. Even though the econo...
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Those who shop at Patagonia or Etsy are likely aware of a new type of business entity that is growing in popularity. These companies and a thousand more have chosen to organize as either B corporations or benefit corporations. While there are differences between B corporations and benefit corporati...
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Drop shipping is a commonly used retail method in which the retailer doesn't hold the inventory it sells to the end customer. After a retailer accepts an order for a product, it places an order for that product with a third party, typically the manufacturer or wholesaler (shipper) who ships the pr...
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
States have increasingly turned to independent tax tribunals as a means of providing taxpayers with a dedicated forum to adjudicate tax appeals before entering the court system. Independent tax tribunals have been lauded because they are separate from the state tax authority and the judges have tax...
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Many public corporations and even some closely held businesses use equity-based compensation awards to attract, motivate, and reward employees. Equity-based compensation includes nonqualified and incentive stock options, restricted stock units, stock appreciation rights, performance shares and unit...
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Cloud computing is all the rage, and likely to remain that way. Businesses aren't just implementing cloud computing as an add-on to their current business technology strategy, they're changing their technology strategies to use cloud computing. Because of this, it's unlikely that there will be a...
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Fair apportionment is a constitutional requirement. According to Complete Auto Transit Inc. v. Brady, 430 U.S. 274 (1977), to be fairly apportioned, a state tax on corporate income must be limited to the portion of a multistate business's net income that is "fairly attributable" to the business's a...
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
The judgment is in, and it's a win for transparency. We've been waiting for a decision from a Kentucky court in a suit Tax Analysts joined to require the Department of Revenue to release redacted copies of its final letter rulings. The suit was brought by Mark Sommer of Frost Brown Todd, who soug...
Thursday, August 28, 2014
A case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court that has yet to grab the attention of the mainstream media is Maryland State Comptroller of Treasury v. Wynne. It's a state tax case that is interesting because it could significantly change the scope of the dormant commerce clause. The dormant commerce...
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
The tax incentive deal reached between Oregon and Intel Corp. has made headlines for the past week. It was a highly anticipated deal, as Intel had used nearly all of the benefit of its previous package of tax breaks. Under the terms of the agreement, Intel will make various payments to Washington C...
Wednesday, August 6, 2014
The California Franchise Tax Board recently issued Legal Ruling 2014-01, which addresses when a business entity with a membership interest in a limited liability company is required to file a California return and pay applicable taxes. The ruling comes while a case is pending on that very issue. Th...
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Tax Analysts recently requested, under the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act, “copies of all field audit manuals and audit training manuals.” The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration sent back a misguided response. Revenue Legal Counsel Joel DiPippa, who wrote the letter denying Ta...
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
In 2012 I wrote an article for State Tax Notes discussing whether states are adequately auditing real estate partnerships. A key source in that story was Jerry Curnutt, a former partnership industry specialist for the IRS. Curnutt told me the problem was that some real estate partnerships improperl...
Wednesday, July 16, 2014
Many businesses think they have taken the steps necessary to be ready for a sales and use tax audit. They believe they are adequately organized, fully documented, and well prepared overall. That is, until the audit notice arrives in the mail and they realize that perhaps they should have done more...