Land trusts should not be enlisted to police appraisals of valuation

Isolated Tree

Article by: Ronald Levitt and David M. Wooldridge We recently provided thoughts on Tim Lindstrom’s article in the Summer 2015 issue of Saving Land, relating to that article’s discussion of donations by syndicated partnerships. This is a follow up response that concerns the article’s discussion of a land trust’s role in the valuation of anRead More

IRS applies CE type attacks in new bargain sale case

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Article by: Ronald Levitt and Gregory Rhodes The IRS seems to be stuck in its conservation easement attack mode even in the recent bargain sale case, Davis v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo 2015-88, which was issued by Judge Paris last week. Davis involves the bargain sale of property made by a generous real estate developer inRead More

Tenth Circuit deals blow to donor of conservation easement on land subject to mortgage

Dollar sign and wooden hammer.

Last week, the Tenth Circuit upheld the Tax Court’s decisions Mitchell v. Commissioner, 138 T.C. No. 16 (2012), mot. for reconsideration denied, T.C. Memo 2013-204, to completely deny the taxpayer’s deduction for the donation of a conservation easement where the donor failed to subordinate the mortgage on the property to the conservation easement.  A copyRead More

Fourth Circuit disallows $10 million conservation easement deduction by imposing a strict requirement that property boundaries be fixed perpetually, and Court disregards the easement’s savings clause

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Last month, the Fourth Circuit handed down its decision in Belk v. Comm’r, which is the first Appellate court opinion to interpret the Section 170(b)(2) requirement of a “qualified real property interest” in the context of donating a conservation easement.  The Fourth Circuit held that to be a “qualified real property interest,” an easement mustRead More

Favorable conservation easement bill passes: Rules for deductions extended

Time For Legal Services

We have decided that our fearless leader, David Wooldridge, is much like the biblical character Joseph, who had a dream about something happening and then it occurred. Thankfully, David’s prediction from his dream had to do with the tax extender bill that passed the Senate Tuesday night and nothing to do with droughts. That allRead More

Correction of previous conservation easement article in The Preserver

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This morning’s article “Favorable conservation easement deduction rules extended for one year” has an error. We made a mistake and jumped the gun. While we pride ourselves in being as perfect as possible, sometimes we cannot even preserve our perfection.  We are hopeful that the tax extender’s legislation will pass soon and we will be sureRead More