State Tax Issues

Hide and Seek

A national study released in 2015 reported that “nearly half the residential purchases of over $5 million were made by shell companies rather than named people.”[ii] Because shell companies could often be formed without disclosing the individuals that ultimately owned or controlled them (i.e., their beneficial owners), and could be used to conduct financial transactions without disclosing their true beneficial owners’ involvement, there was a concern that criminals were using such vehicles to launder money through the purchase of real estate and thereby hide, or at least obscure, the illicit origin of their funds. The report explained that many of these purchases were made in all-cash transactions; thus, no lender was involved and, so, the usual due diligence that accompanies a loan application was avoided.[iii]  Continue Reading NY’s LLC Transparency Act and NYC Real Estate – Albany Wants to Know the Secrets that You Keep[i]

NY Needs the Revenue

A couple of weeks ago, the Tax Foundation released its latest “State Business Tax Climate Index,”[i] which assesses a state’s tax system and compares it to that of other states. New York seems to be a perennial among the ten lowest-ranked states, at number 49.[ii]

According to another report recently issued by the Foundation, New York experienced the highest net loss of residents as a result of interstate migration as a share of its population.[iii]Continue Reading N.Y. Sales Tax – Responsible Person Liability

A Dirty Business?

The art world is replete with tales of whodunits, forgeries, thefts, money laundering, looting of antiquities, murders, ancient curses, etc. You might say it’s a perfect environment for the more “sophisticated” type of criminal.[i] For the same reasons, it has proven to be a rich source of material for literature and Hollywood – “art” imitating life, as they say.Continue Reading Sotheby’s N.Y. Sales Tax “Woes” Revisited


It wouldn’t be far-fetched to say that, as a species, we humans have a propensity – rooted in our instinctive tendency for self-preservation – toward denying anything we believe may cause us harm. It should come as no surprise that this natural inclination has found expression in the arts. For example, there are certain lyrics and movie scripts that include lines that are memorable only because they recall this defense mechanism called “denial.”

For example, the artist known as Shaggy[i] created a song around two[ii] simple words with which countless children and former children have responded to a variety of accusatory questions: “Wasn’t me.”
Continue Reading Personal Liability for NY Sales Taxes –Sometimes, There’s No Denying It

The Mid-Terms

With 50 seats in the Senate, the Dems still control that Chamber. A win in the Georgia runoff, however, may lessen the burden for Majority Leader Schumer by, perhaps, neutralizing the significance of a certain member of his own party.[i]

Meanwhile, the GOP has claimed “control” of the House by a very thin margin,[ii] but the party’s leadership is already being challenged by its more conservative members.[iii]

On the other side of the aisle, moderate Dems in the House are certainly taking notice of how well the elections went for the “progressive” wing of their party.[iv]

Politics being what it is, would it surprise you if nothing happened in Congress for the next two years? Probably not.
Continue Reading Thinking About Leaving New York? Don’t Forget to Check Your Federal Tax Return

Mid-Terms In Sight

On October 6, 2022, the President announced three changes in the Federal government’s policy toward cannabis:

  1. He pardoned all prior Federal offenses of simple possession of marijuana;[i]
  2. He urged governors to do the same with regard to state offenses;[ii] and
  3. He asked the Secretary of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) and the Attorney General to reconsider how marijuana is scheduled under Federal law.[iii]

The announcement came on the heels of increasing pressure from fellow Democrats who ran on a pro-marijuana platform in 2020 and who are facing mid-term elections next month with nothing to show for their efforts:
Continue Reading Cannabis & the Mid-Terms: What Tax Policy?

Across the Hudson

Last week, Governor Murphy of New Jersey staked out a position on New York City’s congestion pricing proposal, stating that it “can’t be ‘on the backs of New Jersey commuters.’”[i]

“Whether it’s how we’re taxed by our neighbors or this proposal for a congestion-pricing scheme that would be a huge burden on commuters,” the Governor continued, “we can’t have it both ways.”

Of course, the Governor was referring to New York’s taxation of New Jersey residents who are employed in New York and whose earnings are taxed in New York, for which the New Jersey residents claim a credit against their New Jersey income tax liability on such earnings.[ii]
Continue Reading Push-Back On New York’s Mission to Tax Non-New Yorkers?

Everyone has heard about the affluent, or even not-so-affluent, New Yorkers who have moved to Florida, or to another state,[i] to escape New York’s tax regime, not to mention the cold.

More recently, some of us are encountering New Yorkers who are looking to relocate, not to another state, but to another country.[ii]

Today we’ll consider the New Yorker who is thinking about moving overseas – in no small part because they have had their fill of paying New York taxes[iii] – but who is not willing to give up their U.S. citizenship; they want to maintain their U.S. passport to keep open the option of returning to the U.S. if future circumstances ever warrant such a move.[iv]
Continue Reading When New York Taxpayers Move Overseas

“Summertime and the Living” Isn’t Easy[i]

Summer in the New York Metro Area can be challenging. Some would say it sucks.[ii] It gets really hot. When it rains, it pours – no spritz here. The humidity is oppressive.[iii] Ironically, a forecast of sunny days and clear skies that may draw other “subspecies”[iv] of humans out of their dwellings causes many New Yorkers, instead, to remain indoors, whether it be at home, in air-conditioned shops, or at other artificially cooled venues.
Continue Reading Leaving New York? Can You Prove It?