The Nonprofit Counsel 2015 Summaries

January 2015

  • TE/GE Program Letter Issued

  • Qualified Supporting Organization Acquires Retail Center, With No Adverse Tax-Law Consequences [PLR 201444043]

  • Eradication of World Hunger Thwarted by Private Benefit Doctrine [PLR 201443021]

  • Contraceptive Mandate Opt-Out for Religious Organizations Held Lawful [Priests for Life v. Department of Health and Human Services]

  • Donors Lose Carryforward Deduction Due to PPA Law Revision [Reisner v. Commissioner]

  • Change of Domicile State Held Not Creation of New Entity [PLR 201446025]

  • No Tax-Exempt Construction Company [PLR 201446028]

  • Mergers [PLRs 201445015, 201446026]

  • Private Foundation Corner [PLRs 201445017, 201446024, 201447043; Grace Foundation v. Commissioner]

  • IRS Updates Tax Rates, Inflation Adjustments for 2015 [Rev. Proc. 2014-61]


February 2015

  • Tax Extenders Legislation Signed Into Law

  • Realignment of EO Technical Work Formally Announced by IRS [Ann. 2014-34]

  • IRS to Abate Excess Business Holdings Taxes Due to Reasonable Cause, in Form of Reliance on Incorrect Legal Advice [TAM 201448032]

  • Denial of Deduction for Floating Easement Affirmed [Belk v. Commissioner]

  • "Dormant Shell," With Plan, Held to Meet Operational Test [PLR 201448026]

  • Political Activities Doom Social Welfare Exemption [PLR 201449002]

  • GAO Report Provides Narrative on Streamlined Application [GAO-15-164]

  • GAO Laments Low E-Filing Rate by Tax-Exempt Organizations


March 2015

  • Treasury, IRS Issue Final Regulations as to Charitable Hospitals Rules [T.D. 9708]

  • Easement Deduction Denial Affirmed Because of Lack of Mortgage Subordination [Mitchell v. Commissioner]

  • IRS Declines to Abate Intermediate Sanctions Taxes, Finds Insufficient Reliance on Legal Advice [TAM 201503019]

  • Commerciality, Private Benefit Preclude Exemption for Charitable Giving Facilitator [PLR 201452017]

  • Private Benefit Doctrine Dooms Exemption for Nonprofit Time Bank Network [PLR 201452018]

  • Nonprofit Organization Not Exempt Because It Is Not Club [PLR 201451030]

  • Online Marketplace/Charity Ruled Commercial, Nonexempt [PLR 2015

  • Exempt University's For-Profit Subsidiary's Operations Held Not Attributable for Tax Law Purposes [PLR 201503018]

  • Final Exemption Procedure for Exempt Health Insurance Issuers Issued [T.D. 9709]

  • House Adopts Dynamic Scoring Methodology to Assess Major Tax and Other Legislation [H. Res. 5]

  • IRS Issues Procedural Rules for 2015 [Rev. Proc. 2015-1 through 2015-5, 2015-8 through 2015-10]


April 2015

  • Treasury, IRS Issue Updated 2014-2015 Priority Guidance Plan

  • IRS Issues Procedures for Recognition of Exemption for Health Insurance Issuers [Rev. Proc. 2015-17]

  • Open Source Software Distribution Held Not Exempt Function [PLRs 201505040, 201505041]

  • Proposed Grant to Community Foundation Ruled Unusual [PLR 201507024]

  • Once Again, No Tax-Exempt Booster Club [PLR 201507023]

  • Farmers' Market Not Tax-Exempt Agicultural Organization [PLR 201508011]

  • Other Recent IRS Private Letter Rulings [PLRs 201450023, 201507026]

  • Estate Charitable Deduction Denied Because Funds Not Permanently Set Aside [Estate of Belmont v. Commissioner]

  • Finance Committee Clears Three Nonprofit Organizations Bills

  • Qualified Tuition Plan Bill Marked Up by Ways and Means [H.R. 529]


May 2015

  • IRS Issues ACA-Mandated Report on Exempt and Other Hospitals

  • IRS Provides Guidance as to Correction and Disclosure Procedures for Hospitals [Rev. Proc. 2015-21]

  • IRS Delegates Legal Authority to Chief Counsel for Technical Work [Delegation Order 30-7]

  • Gift of Easement with Boundary Adjustment Allowance Held to Not Qualify for Deduction [Balsam Mountain Investments, LLC v. Commissioner]

  • Property Sale to Disqualified Person Ruled Not Direct or Indirect Self-Dealing [PLR 201510050]

  • Disaster Assistance for Small Businesses Ruled Not Charitable Undertaking [PLR 201509039]

  • Cooperative Held to Have Excludable Income [PLR 201509001, updating 201338029]

  • For-Profit Case Illustrates Tax Law as to Bonuses [Midwest Eye Center, S.C. v. Commissioner]

  • Independent Sector Issues Revised Governance Principles

  • Legislative Developments


June 2015

  • Thoughts on IRS and Streamlining

  • Case Study: Application of FOIA to Requests From Exempt Organizations [Sea Shepherd Conservation Society v. IRS]

  • Court Orders IRS to Produce EO List to Enable Class Certification in Another Application Battle [NorCal Tea Party Patriots v. IRS]

  • Ugly Facts Illustrate Law as to Easement Enforcement Charitable Organizations [PLR 201514010]

  • Exempt Organization Law Developments From IRS Commissioner

  • Slain Officers Support Bill Signed [P. L. 114-7]

  • US Attorney Declines to Prosecute Lois Lerner

  • Unusual Grant Corner [PLRs 201512004, 201516069]

  • VEBA Corner[PLRs 201512006, 201515036]

  • Other Recent IRS Private Letter Rulings [CCAM 201511020, PLRs 201514011, 201515035, 201516030]

  • Comments on Independent Sector's Revised Governance Principles


July 2015

  • New TIGTA Report: IRS Has Significantly Improved Applications Processing [2015-10-025]

  • Appellate Court Upholds Disclosure of Form 990 Schedule B to State Attorney General [Center for Competitive Politics v. Harris]

  • Red Flags and Sophistication Result in Accuracy-Related Penalty [Kaufman v. Commissioner]

  • Bargain Sale Charitable Deduction Allowed, Value May be Reduced; Lack of Donative Intent Alleged [Davis v. Commissioner]

  • Charter School Held Not State Instrumentality [CCAM 201519027]

  • Grant of Easement Fails to Yield Deduction on Three Grounds [Costello v. Commissioner]

  • Homeowners' Association on USFS Land Has Exemption Revoked [PLR 201518018]

  • Lack of Charitable Class Helps Doom Charitable Exemption Efforts [PLRs 201519034, 201519035]

  • Business League Loses Exemption Because of New Entity Formation [PLR 201521017]

  • Updated Priority Guidance Plan and Exempt ABLE Accounts [IRC sec. 529A]

  • Finance Committee Marks Up Tuition Plan Legislation [S. 335]

  • Think the IRS is Suspicious? [PLR 201519033]


August 2015

  • Court of Appeals Allows Case Charging Discriminatory Review of Exemption Application to Proceed [Z Street, Inc. v. Koskinen]

  • IRS's Lawyers Approve Church Property Seizure [CCAM 201520009]

  • Form 1023-EZ Said to be Successful Thus Far

  • Symposium Favoring Political Party Ruled Campaign Activity, Precluding Exemption [PLR 201523021]

  • Career Advancement Ruled Form of Private Benefit [PLR 2015230- Exemption Revoked, for Some Rather Good Reasons [PLR 201524026]

  • Tax Law Chairs Seeking Treasury Documents Concerning Political Activities Proposal

  • Other Recent IRS Private letter Rulings [PLRs 201525007, 201525011]

  • Qualified ABLE Programs Proposed Regulations Issued [IRC sec. 529A]

  • Charitable Giving in 2014 is Impressive


September 2015

  • GAO: IRS Controls Over EO Audits Need to be strengthened; Fairness Seen as Primary Objective [GAO-15-514]

  • PARC Criteria Shifting [TEGE-04-0715-0018]

  • Taxpayer Advocate Displeased With Streamlined Application; Projects 21-Plus Percent Error Rate

  • Supreme Court's Ruling Concerning Health Insurance Exchanges and Tax Credits, and Its Implications [King v. Burwell]

  • Supreme Court's Same-Sex Marriage Opinion and Its Implications [Obergefell v. Hodges]

  • Additional Supreme Court Developments [Fisher v. University of Texas; Zubik v. Burwell; Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association]

  • Deductions Lost as Donor Fails Appraisal, Substantiation Rules [Isaacs v. Commissioner]

  • Recent IRS Private Letter Rulings PLR 201525012, 201525014]

  • Senate Finance Committee Approves Tax Extenders Bill

  • Contraceptive Mandate Update [Little Sisters of the Poor Home for the Aged v. Burwell; CMS regs]


October 2015

  • Senate Finance Committee: IRS was "Delinquent" in Processing Applications; Management Repeatedly "Failed" [S. Rep. No. 114-119]

  • Treasury, IRS Issue 2015-2016 Priority Guidance Plan

  • Court Holds Fixed Percentage Must be Used in Valuing NIMCRUT Remainder Interest [Estate of Schaefer v. Commissioner]

  • Claim of Tax Exemption Rejected Because of Lack of Organizational Form [George v. Commissioner]

  • Another Court of Appeals Agrees: Mortgages Must be Subordinated to Have Deductible Easement Gift [Minnick v. Commissioner]

  • Recent IRS Private Letter Rulings [201526020, 201527043, 201528010, 201528038, 201529010, 201531022, 201533014, 201534016, 201534020, 201534018]

  • Supreme Court: Town's Sign Code Violates Church's Free Speech Rights; Strict Scrutiny Expanded [Reed v. Town of Gilbert, Arizona]


November 2015

  • IRS Toughens Exemption Application Processing Timeline [TEGE-07-0915-0022]

  • IRS Clarifies Law as to Foundations' Mission-Related Investing [Notice 2015-62]

  • Proposed Regulations Implementing Exception to Gift Substantiation Requirement Issued [REG-138344-13]

  • Tax Penalties Imposed for Promotion of Religious Entity Abusive Tax Shelter [Gardner v. Commissioner]

  • Contraceptive Mandate, Applied to Nonreligious Organization, Held Unconstitutional and Violation of RFRA [March for Life v. Burwell]

  • Recent IRS Private Letter Rulings [201534018, 201534020, 201535019, 201537019, 201537025]


December 2015

  • TE/GE Issues FY 2016 Work Plan

  • Final Regulations as to Private Foundations' Good-Faith Determinations Issued [T.D. 9740]

  • Seven US Senators: Tax Exemption is Tax Evasion

  • IRS: Nonprofit Successors to For-Profit Companies Cannot be Tax-Exempt [PLR 201540019]

  • Estate Charitable Deduction Denied (Again) Because Funds Not Permanently Set-Aside [Estate of DiMarco v. Commissioner]

  • Organization Has Exemption Revoked Because of Close Operational Ties with Telemarketing Company [PLR 201541013]

  • IRS Updates Tax Rates, Inflation Adjustments for 2016 [Rev. Proc. 2015-53]

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