Gift Tax

Go After Real Estate?

During the 2020 presidential campaign, there was one segment of the “rich” for which then-candidate Biden seemed to have reserved some of his harshest criticism – wealthy real estate investors. Moreover, the Democratic Party’s platform included several proposed changes to the Code[i] the impact of which would probably be felt most keenly by such investors.[ii]

Query the origin of this posture. Was it grounded – pun intended – in the Party’s association, rightly or wrongly, of the real estate industry with Mr. Trump?[iii] But how can this be reconciled with the sizable contributions made by industry leaders to Mr. Biden’s campaign and to political action committees that supported him?[iv]

Regardless of why candidate Biden identified the federal taxation of real estate as an example of what he described as the Code’s special treatment of the wealthy,[v] President Biden recently proposed that the Code be amended to limit many of the favorable provisions upon which real estate investors have long relied for purposes of evaluating the acquisition, operation, and disposition of investment properties.Continue Reading “Earth to Earth”: Real Estate, Death and Biden’s Tax Proposals

According to Justice Learned Hand, “Any one may so arrange his affairs that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which will best pay the Treasury; there is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes.” Stated differently, taxpayers have the right to pay only the amount of tax legally due.

Having said that, taxpayers have, over the years, demonstrated varying degrees of aversion to their tax obligations – especially in high-tax states like New York. Those New York taxpayers who are willing to “roll the dice” are hopefully aware of the associated audit risk, but many of them may be ignorant of the exposure they face from New York’s False Claims Act.Continue Reading Thinking About ‘Avoiding’ NY Tax Increases? Then Think About the False Claims Act