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A Critical Problem Needing A Bolder Solution?: A Response To Atinuke O. Adediran's "Nonprofit Board Composition", Lloyd Hitashi Mayer Jan 2022

A Critical Problem Needing A Bolder Solution?: A Response To Atinuke O. Adediran's "Nonprofit Board Composition", Lloyd Hitashi Mayer

Journal Articles

The governing boards of nonprofit organizations, and particularly of nonprofits that serve low income and other vulnerable populations, fail to adequately include the populations that they serve. At least this is the common understanding among people familiar with these boards. Professor Atinuke Adediran not only confirms the existence of this problem but clarifies it in four important ways. Professor Adediran also proposes concrete steps to address it; although, the clarity she has brought to the problem raises the question of whether she could have been bolder in her proposed solutions.

The clarity comes from new data, careful consideration of previous …


Seeking Tax Justice For Undocumented Immigrant Workers, Jacqueline Lainez Flanagan Aug 2021

Seeking Tax Justice For Undocumented Immigrant Workers, Jacqueline Lainez Flanagan

Journal Articles

Global Roundtable is a regular series appearing in Tax Notes Federal, Tax Notes State, and Tax Notes International that brings together experts from each discipline to help advance the discussion of tax issues. In this installment, the authors examine the lack of racial diversity in the tax profession and built-in biases in tax policies and suggest ways to remedy the inequities. This article is intended for general information purposes only and does not and is not intended to constitute legal advice. The reader should consult with legal counsel to determine how laws or decisions discussed herein apply to the reader’s …


Reframing Taxigration In The Search For Tax Justice, Jacqueline Lainez Flanagan May 2021

Reframing Taxigration In The Search For Tax Justice, Jacqueline Lainez Flanagan

Journal Articles

The Search for Tax Justice is a Tax Notes State series examining the inequities inherent in state and federal taxes. In this installment, Jacqueline Laínez Flanagan, associate professor of law and director of the University of the District of Columbia’s David A. Clarke School of Law Tax Clinic, discusses tax challenges faced by immigrants and responds to myths about the undocumented taxpayer community.


What Is Caesar's, What Is God's: Fundamental Public Policy For Churches, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer, Zachary B. Pohlman Jan 2021

What Is Caesar's, What Is God's: Fundamental Public Policy For Churches, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer, Zachary B. Pohlman

Journal Articles

Bob Jones University v. United States is both a highly debated Supreme Court decision and a rarely applied one. Its recognition of a contrary to fundamental public policy doctrine that could cause an otherwise tax-exempt organization to lose its favorable federal tax status remains highly controversial, although the Court has shown no inclination to revisit the case and Congress has shown no desire to change the underlying statutes to alter the case’s result. That lack of action may be in part because the IRS applies the decision in relatively rare and narrow circumstances.

The mention of the decision during oral …


Reasonable Tax Rules: Advancing Process Values With Remedial Restraint, James M. Puckett Jan 2020

Reasonable Tax Rules: Advancing Process Values With Remedial Restraint, James M. Puckett

Journal Articles

The tax administration is at risk of an overcorrection with respect to its rulemaking process. Tax practitioners increasingly are mining the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) as well as chipping away at barriers to pre-enforcement review of tax rules. Tax rules include regulations, revenue rulings, revenue procedures, and more informal guidance to the public. APA-based challenges to tax rules have gained traction in the courts, typically alleging inadequate explanation or timing irregularities involving notice and comment. Such claims potentially pose major challenges for fair and efficient tax administration.

This Article integrates administrative law scholarship calling for a rule of reason with …


Called To Serve: Elevating Human-Performed Caregiver And Volunteer Work In An Era Of Ai-Robotic Technologies, Hilary G. Escajeda Jan 2019

Called To Serve: Elevating Human-Performed Caregiver And Volunteer Work In An Era Of Ai-Robotic Technologies, Hilary G. Escajeda

Journal Articles

Although the status quo of the traditional female caregiver has managed to muddle forward, it may begin to unwind as increasingly capable technologies dislodge humans from full-time employment and compel a redefinition of valuable work. Given this backdrop, this Essay seeks to open a dialogue for developing thoughtful, modem tax policies. Part I outlines the vocational endeavors of historically female community members who serve as caregivers and social volunteers. Next, Part II summarizes the economic value of volunteer and caregiver services. Part III examines whether tax policies should adopt a more expansive definition of beneficial occupations, as artificial intelligence (AI) …


Wealth Accumulation At Elite Colleges, Endowment Taxation, And The Unlikely Story Of How Donald Trump Got One Thing Right, Mae C. Quinn Jan 2019

Wealth Accumulation At Elite Colleges, Endowment Taxation, And The Unlikely Story Of How Donald Trump Got One Thing Right, Mae C. Quinn

Journal Articles

President Donald Trump has· declared war on immigrants, diversity, and those who dare to dissent. Rooted in resentments about who people are, where they were born, and what they believe, these executive-led assaults are dangerous developments in the modern era. However, in the course of Trump's many retrograde tirades, he has somehow managed to get one thing right-too many elite private colleges in the United States, considered nonprofit entities, have amassed way too much wealth. This Article recounts this unlikely story, including how the Trump Administration's 2017 endowment tax could work to advance diversity. The new endowment tax penalizes private …


When Soft Law Meets Hard Politics: Taming The Wild West Of Nonprofit Political Involvement, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer Jan 2019

When Soft Law Meets Hard Politics: Taming The Wild West Of Nonprofit Political Involvement, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer

Journal Articles

Beginning in the 1990s and continuing to today, many of the legal and psychological barriers to nonprofits becoming involved in electoral politics have fallen. At the same time, political divisions have sharpened, causing candidates, political parties, and their supporters to scramble ever more aggressively for any possible edge in winner-take-all political contests. In the face of these developments, many nonprofits have violated the remaining legal rules applicable to their political activity with little fear of negative consequences, especially given vague rules and a paucity of enforcement resources. Such violations include underreporting of political activity in government filings, fly-by-night organizations that …


The Promises And Perils Of Using Big Data To Regulate Nonprofits, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer Jan 2019

The Promises And Perils Of Using Big Data To Regulate Nonprofits, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer

Journal Articles

For the optimist, government use of “Big Data” involves the careful collection of information from numerous sources. The government then engages in expert analysis of those data to reveal previously undiscovered patterns. Discovering patterns revolutionizes the regulation of criminal behavior, education, health care, and many other areas. For the pessimist, government use of Big Data involves the haphazard seizure of information to generate massive databases. Those databases render privacy an illusion and result in arbitrary and discriminatory computer-generated decisions. The reality is, of course, more complicated. On one hand, government use of Big Data may lead to greater efficiency, effectiveness, …


A (Partial) Defense Of Section 501(C)(4)'S “Catchall” Nature, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer Mar 2018

A (Partial) Defense Of Section 501(C)(4)'S “Catchall” Nature, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer

Journal Articles

Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(4) provides exemption from federal income tax for “social welfare” organizations. The vagueness of this term and the failure of the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service to interpret it in a manner that would significantly limit that vagueness has led some commentators to criticize this section’s “catchall” nature. While much scholarly attention has been paid to this criticism with respect to the most visible section 501(c)(4) organizations, particularly those involved in political campaign activity and lobbying, almost no attention has been paid to the many less common types of section 501(c)(4) organizations that illustrate that …


Improving Tax Rules By Means-Testing: Bridging Wealth Inequality And "Ability To Pay", James M. Puckett Jan 2018

Improving Tax Rules By Means-Testing: Bridging Wealth Inequality And "Ability To Pay", James M. Puckett

Journal Articles

The federal income tax can and should do more to address wealth disparities and income inequality. The income tax does not directly count wealth, and the realization rule and basis "step-up" at death exclude substantial amounts of income for the wealthy. The Constitution limits Congress's ability to tax wealth. Despite these serious challenges, this Article considers how to potentially bridge the gap between wealth and the income tax. For example, asset-based phase-outs in the income tax should pass muster without apportionment, although their bite would necessarily be limited. The Article posits that the public would be more receptive to phase-outs …


Citizens Abroad And Social Cohesion At Home: Refocusing A Cross-Border Tax Policy Debate, Michael Kirsch Jan 2017

Citizens Abroad And Social Cohesion At Home: Refocusing A Cross-Border Tax Policy Debate, Michael Kirsch

Journal Articles

Modern developments raise significant questions about the future importance (or non-importance) of formal citizenship status. For example, while many have interpreted the European Union project, with its emphasis on the free movement of individuals, as portending the decreasing relevance of nationality, recent developments, such as the “Brexit” vote, suggest that national identity remains an important factor for many individuals. While much of the public debate over citizenship focuses on areas, such as immigration, that are more obviously tied to formal citizenship status, this debate also impacts cross-border tax policy.

Over the past decade, several scholars have addressed the use of …


Prop Up The Heavenly Chorus? Labor Unions, Tax Policy, And Political Voice Equality, Philip T. Hackney Jan 2017

Prop Up The Heavenly Chorus? Labor Unions, Tax Policy, And Political Voice Equality, Philip T. Hackney

Journal Articles

Labor Unions are nonprofit organizations that provide laborers a voice before their employer and before governments. They are classic interest groups. United States federal tax policy exempts labor unions from the income tax, but effectively prohibits labor union members from deducting union dues from the individual income tax. Because these two policies directly impact the political voice of laborers, I consider primarily the value of political fairness in evaluating these tax policies rather than the typical tax critique of economic fairness or efficiency. I apply a model that presumes our democracy should aim for one person, one political voice. For …


Should The Law Do Anything About Economic Inequality?, Matthew Dimick Oct 2016

Should The Law Do Anything About Economic Inequality?, Matthew Dimick

Journal Articles

What should be done about rising income and wealth inequality? Should the design and adoption of legal rules take into account their effects on the distribution of income and wealth? Or should the tax-and-transfer system be the exclusive means to address concerns about inequality? A widely-held view argues for the latter: only the tax system, and not the legal system, should be used to redistribute income. While this argument comes in a variety of normative arguments and has support across the political spectrum, there is also a well-known law-and-economics version. This argument, known as the “double-distortion” argument, is simply stated. …


'The Better Part Of Valour Is Discretion': Should The Irs Change Or Surrender Its Oversight Of Tax-Exempt Organizations?, Lloyd Hitoshi Mayer Jan 2016

'The Better Part Of Valour Is Discretion': Should The Irs Change Or Surrender Its Oversight Of Tax-Exempt Organizations?, Lloyd Hitoshi Mayer

Journal Articles

Recent events have highlighted the difficulties the Internal Revenue Service faces when attempting to ensure that purportedly tax-exempt organizations in fact qualify for that status. The problems in this area go much deeper than a group of IRS employees subjecting certain organizations to greater scrutiny based on their political leanings, however. For decades members of the public, the media, the academy, and Congress have criticized the limited ability of the IRS to ensure that organizations claiming exemption from federal income tax in fact deserve that categorization. Yet examples of IRS failings in this area continue to arise with depressing frequency. …


Tax Treaties And The Taxation Of Services In The Absence Of Physical Presence, Michael Kirsch Jan 2016

Tax Treaties And The Taxation Of Services In The Absence Of Physical Presence, Michael Kirsch

Journal Articles

It is old news that modern technological developments have strained long‐standing international tax policies and principles. Tax treaties have attempted to keep pace by fitting these new developments within the existing framework. This brief article addresses one aspect of technological developments that can directly affect individual taxpayers—the increasing ability to deliver personal services electronically across borders, without the need for the service provider to have a physical presence in the “source” country. In particular, it focuses on recent developments with the U.N. Model, which may allow source‐based taxation of at least some types of services income even in the absence …


Fragmented Oversight Of Nonprofits In The United States: Does It Work? Can It Work?, Lloyd Hitoshi Mayer Jan 2016

Fragmented Oversight Of Nonprofits In The United States: Does It Work? Can It Work?, Lloyd Hitoshi Mayer

Journal Articles

Previously Brendan Wilson and I concluded that oversight of nonprofit governance would be most effective if it remained the responsibility of the states, although it would benefit from both a federal funding mechanism and enhanced coordination with the Internal Revenue Service.' More recently I concluded that oversight of federal tax exemption would be better served if Congress shifted the locus of that oversight to a national, self-regulatory organization working in close cooperation with the IRS given the perennial financial and other limitations faced by the IRS.2 What neither of these earlier articles addressed, however, was whether the current split of …


Post-Graduate Legal Training: The Case For Tax-Exempt Programs, Adam Chodorow, Philip T. Hackney Nov 2015

Post-Graduate Legal Training: The Case For Tax-Exempt Programs, Adam Chodorow, Philip T. Hackney

Journal Articles

The challenging job market for recent law school graduates has highlighted a fact well known to those familiar with legal education: A significant gap exists between what students learn in law school and what they need to be practice-ready lawyers. Legal employers historically assumed the task of providing real-world training, but they have become much less willing to do so. At the same time, a large numbers of Americans – and not just those living at or below the poverty line – are simply unable to afford lawyers. In this Article, we argue that post-graduate legal training, similar to post-graduate …


Who Wins Residential Property Tax Appeals?, Randall K. Johnson Jan 2015

Who Wins Residential Property Tax Appeals?, Randall K. Johnson

Journal Articles

This article explains who wins residential property tax appeals in Cook County, Illinois. It does so by collecting and combining public sector data, which has been recently released by the Cook County Assessor. The article then uses this data to compute three statistics. Lastly, it contextualizes each statistic in order to determine if some townships, or groups of townships, win more appeals than expected


Structural Tax Exceptionalism, James M. Puckett Jan 2015

Structural Tax Exceptionalism, James M. Puckett

Journal Articles

This Article argues that it is misleading to declare the death of tax exceptionalism and that structural tax exceptionalism may have important benefits. Part II provides a brief historical overview of the rise of federal agency administration of statutes and especially tax laws. The history trends to detract from anti-tax and anti-agency rhetoric that counsel disempowering the Treasury Department and other administrative agencies from comprehensively enforcing laws and making policy in their relevant domains. Part III analyzes how the Code's structure for tax administration differs from the APA template for administrative agencies. Part IV deconstructs these differences, drawing from general …


Charitable Organization Oversight: Rules V. Standards, Philip T. Hackney Jan 2015

Charitable Organization Oversight: Rules V. Standards, Philip T. Hackney

Journal Articles

Congress has traditionally utilized standards as a means of communicating charitable tax law in the Code. In the past fifteen years, however, Congress has increasingly turned to rules to stop fraud and abuse in the charitable sector. I review the rules versus standards debate to evaluate this trend. Are congressional rules the best method for regulating the charitable sector? While the complex changing nature of charitable purpose would suggest standards are better, the inadequacy of IRS enforcement and the large number of unsophisticated charitable organizations both augur strongly in favor of rules. Congress, however, is not the ideal institution to …


Business Lobbying As An Informational Public Good: Can Tax Deductions For Lobbying Expenses Promote Transparency?, Michael Halberstam, Stuart G. Lazar Mar 2014

Business Lobbying As An Informational Public Good: Can Tax Deductions For Lobbying Expenses Promote Transparency?, Michael Halberstam, Stuart G. Lazar

Journal Articles

The view that “lobbying is essentially an informational activity” has persistently served the suggestion that lobbying provides a public good by educating legislators about policy and the consequences of legislation.

In this article, we link a proposed tax reform with a substantive disclosure requirement to promote the kind of “information subsidy” that serves the public interest, while mitigating – at least to some extent – the distortion that may result from the imbalance of financial resources on the business side and other institutional contraints identified in the literature. We argue that corporate lobbying should be encouraged – by allowing business …


Who’S Afraid Of The Big Bad Tax-Free Liquidating Distribution? Ideological Debates On Taxation And The Repeal Of General Utilities, Martin Edwards Jan 2014

Who’S Afraid Of The Big Bad Tax-Free Liquidating Distribution? Ideological Debates On Taxation And The Repeal Of General Utilities, Martin Edwards

Journal Articles

The General Utilities doctrine, named for the 1935 Supreme Court decision allowing a corporation to distribute appreciated assets to shareholders without reporting a taxable gain, was once known as one of seven fundamental principles of American corporate taxation. The doctrine’s popularity reached its peak in 1954, when Congress formally incorporated it into the Internal Revenue Code. Despite this esteemed position among tax-law doctrines, General Utilities was routinely criticized because, among other things, it allowed a situational (and arbitrary) reprieve from “double taxation” of corporate income. Corporate income is functionally taxed twice in the sense that the corporation owes tax on …


Revisiting The Tax Treatment Of Citizens Abroad: Reconciling Principle And Practice, Michael Kirsch Jan 2014

Revisiting The Tax Treatment Of Citizens Abroad: Reconciling Principle And Practice, Michael Kirsch

Journal Articles

In an increasingly mobile world, the taxation of citizens living abroad has taken on increased importance. Recent international administrative developments — most notably, the weakening of foreign bank secrecy and expansion of global information sharing norms — have further raised the profile of this issue. While U.S. law traditionally has taxed U.S. citizens living abroad in the same general manner as citizens living in the United States, a number of scholars have proposed abandoning the use of citizenship as a jurisdictional basis to tax. In its place, they would apply residence-based principles — i.e., exercising full taxing rights over U.S. …


Tax Recognition, Barry Cushman Jan 2014

Tax Recognition, Barry Cushman

Journal Articles

This article was prepared for the St. Louis University Law Journal’s “Teaching Trusts & Estates” issue. Many law students take a course in Trusts & Estates, but comparatively few enroll in a class devoted to the federal wealth transfer taxes. For most law students, the Trusts & Estates course provides the only opportunity for exposure to some of the basic features of the estate tax, the gift tax, the generation-skipping transfer tax, and some related features of the income tax. The coverage demands of the typical Trusts & Estates course do not allow for intensive discussion of these issues, but …


Nfib V. Sebelius And The Transformation Of The Taxing Power, Barry Cushman Jan 2014

Nfib V. Sebelius And The Transformation Of The Taxing Power, Barry Cushman

Journal Articles

In National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, Chief Justice Roberts wrote for a majority of five Justices in holding that the “shared responsibility payment” required by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) constituted an imposition of a “tax” rather than a “penalty.” Thus, even though the Chief Justice and four other Justices had concluded that the provision was not a legitimate exercise of the commerce power, the Court held that it was a valid exercise of the taxing power.

The origin of the distinction between taxes and penalties in taxing power jurisprudence is found in the 1922 …


Taxing Social Enterprise, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer Jan 2014

Taxing Social Enterprise, Lloyd Histoshi Mayer

Journal Articles

The fairly strict divide in the United States between for-profit and nonprofit forms presents a quandary for many entrepreneurs who want to combine doing good with doing well. On the one hand, for-profits offer great flexibility and access to capital and so attract entrepreneurs who would like to take advantage of the ability of for-profits to scale up rapidly to meet growing demand. At the same time, however, for-profit forms also limit entrepreneurs’ ability to engage in philanthropy, due to the fiduciary duties managers owe to the equity holders. On the other hand, nonprofits offer their founders the freedom to …


How Tax Increment Financing (Tif) Districts Correlate With Taxable Properties, Randall K. Johnson Jan 2013

How Tax Increment Financing (Tif) Districts Correlate With Taxable Properties, Randall K. Johnson

Journal Articles

TIF literature does not answer a basic question:Does this economic development tool positively correlate with expanded tax bases? The question is important because it avoids the difficult issue of causation, while also yielding insight into the nature of the relationship between TIF and expanded tax bases. As a result, this Article answers the question for suburban Cook County, Illinois.


Recent Irs Guidance Provides A Degree Of Certainty For 403(B) Plans, Gregory L. Needles, Christina Payne-Tsoupros Jan 2013

Recent Irs Guidance Provides A Degree Of Certainty For 403(B) Plans, Gregory L. Needles, Christina Payne-Tsoupros

Journal Articles

The IRS has released long-awaited guidance expanding the availability of self correction for 403(b) plans and opening the pre-approved plan program. On Dec 12, 2012, the IRS released Rev. Proc. 2013-12, 2013-4 IRB 313, which expanded its self-correction program -- the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS) -- for 403(b) plans. On 3/28/13, the IRS issued Rev. Proc. 2013-22, 2013-18 IRB 985, opening its 403(b) pre-approved plan program. The broader scope of correction under Rev. Proc. 2013-12 is a welcome relief to 403(b) plan sponsors, who may now take advantage of EPCRS to remedy mistakes and avoid plan disqualification in …


Embracing The Queen Of Hearts: Deference To Retroactive Tax Rules, James M. Puckett Jan 2013

Embracing The Queen Of Hearts: Deference To Retroactive Tax Rules, James M. Puckett

Journal Articles

The Supreme Court’s decision in Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research v. United States underscored the importance of a uniform approach to judicial review of administrative action; accordingly, the Court clarified that tax administration is generally subject to the same review as other kinds of administrative action by other federal agencies. Tax guidance from the IRS and Treasury Department serves an important role in clarifying the tax law so that taxpayers may report their tax liability accurately and plan their affairs. Meanwhile, aggressive attempts by a relatively small number of taxpayers to avoid tax liability by exploiting arguable ambiguities …