The 2013–2014 term of the United States Supreme Court resulted in a wide range of decisions of importance to business. In this article, we highlight some of the key opinions and explore their likely impacts. We also preview a few of the high-profile business disputes the Supreme Court has agreed to hear next term.Key Business Cases from the 2013–2014 TermAmerican Chemistry Council v. Environmental Protection Agency: Holding: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reasonably interpreted the Clean Air Act to require sources that would need permits based on their emission of chemical pollutants to comply with “best available control technology” for greenhouse gases. Effect: The decision reinforces the Supreme Court’s previous recognition that the EPA has the power to regulate greenhouse gases as pollutants. However, portions of the decision strongly cautioned the EPA against overreach, stating that the agency may not “bring about … [Read more...] about United States Supreme Court Round-Up: Key Opinions from 2013 to 2014 and Upcoming High-Profile Business Disputes
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One of the most important healthcare law issues of 2012 is how the United States Supreme Court will rule on the individual mandate and the Medicaid expansion mandate in the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”). The ACA became law in 2010. The individual mandate utilizes the tax collection processes under the Internal Revenue Code to penalize individuals who elect not to obtain health insurance, which individual mandate provision is to be implemented in 2014. The Medicaid expansion mandate requires states to provide Medicaid coverage for adults less than 65 years old with incomes up to 133% of the federal poverty level and to children whose families earn up to 133% of the federal poverty level, or the states risk losing their Medicaid matching funds from the federal government. On March 26 through 28, 2012, the United States Supreme Court will hear arguments on the following:Whether, prior to the implementation of individual mandate in 2014, the Anti-Injunction Act bars the … [Read more...] about United States Supreme Court to Rule on Constitutionality of Healthcare Reform
The United States Tax Court recently determined that certain refundable tax credits issued by New York in connection with economic development activities (EZ Credits) constituted taxable income to the recipients for federal tax purposes. Maines v. Comm’r , 144 T.C. No. 8 (Mar. 11, 2015). In reaching this determination, the Court noted that the characterization of certain of the EZ Credits as refundable taxes for New York purposes “is not necessarily controlling for federal tax purposes;” instead, the Court looked at the substance of the EZ Credits and determined that the credits were not actually a refund of previously paid state taxes, and, instead, the credits were a taxable accession to wealth since they were “just transfers from New York to the taxpayer—subsidies essentially.” The Court also considered one other refundable tax credit (the QEZE Credit), which was a credit against income tax liability for the amount of … [Read more...] about U.S. Tax Court Finds Refundable State Credits Result in Taxable Income
Amicus–or “friend of the court”–briefs are not uncommon in Supreme Court and appellate court cases. The purpose of an amicus brief is generally to provide assistance to the court by presenting additional arguments either in support or opposition of one of the litigant’s positions. Amicus briefs should not rehash the same arguments presented by one of the parties, but rather should provide insights and a different perspective that is not presented by the parties, and to inform the court of the impact of the issues in the case on other affected parties. The Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure provide detailed rules on how and when to file an amicus brief. See here for Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 29, which governs amicus filings.Sometimes, amicus parties want to get involved at the trial court level before the trial record is fixed. Thus, increasingly, amicus briefs are being filed in trial courts, and in particular in … [Read more...] about Should Taxpayers File Amicus Briefs in Tax Court Cases?
On July 26, 2017, the United States Tax Court (Tax Court) handed a complete victory to Eaton Corporation (Eaton) relating to the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) cancellation of two Advance Pricing Agreements (APA). Eaton Corporation v. Commissioner, TC Memo 2017-147. The Tax Court held that the IRS had abused its discretion in cancelling the two successive unilateral APAs entered into by Eaton and its subsidiaries with respect to the manufacturing of circuit breaker products in Puerto Rico, and it found no transfer of any intangibles subject to Internal Revenue Code (Code) Section 367(d). In 2011, the IRS cancelled Eaton’s first APA effective January 1, 2005, and the renewal APA effective January 1, 2006, on the ground that Eaton had made numerous material misrepresentations during the negotiations of the APAs and during the implementation of the APAs. As a result of the APA cancellations, the IRS issued notice of deficiencies for 2005 and 2006 determining that a … [Read more...] about Tax Court Hands Eaton a Complete Victory on the Cancellation of its Advance Pricing Agreements