Justia Trusts & Estates Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals
Ball v. Comm’r of Internal Revenue Serv.
In 1997, the trusts acquired all shares of AIS with an aggregate basis of $5,612,555. In 1999, the trusts formed Wind River Corporation and contributed their AIS shares in exchange for all Wind River shares. Wind River designated itself a subchapter S Corporation. In 2003, Wind River elected to treat AIS as a qualified subchapter S subsidiary. Before that election, the trusts’ aggregate adjusted basis in Wind River was $15,246,099. After the Qsub election, the trusts increased their bases in that stock to $242,481,544. The trusts sold their Wind River interests to Fox. After transaction costs, the sale yielded $230,111,857 in cash and securities in exchange for the Wind River stock. The trusts claimed a loss of $12,247,229: the difference between the amount actually received for the sale and the new basis in the Wind River stock. The trusts shareholders’ 2003 tax returns showed that capital loss. The IRS determined that a capital gain of approximately $214 million had been realized from the sale to Fox, for a cumulative tax deficiency of $33,747,858. Deficiency notices stated “the Qsub election and the resulting deemed I.R.C. 332 liquidation did not give rise to an item of income under I.R.C. 1366(a)(1)(A); therefore, [the Trusts] could not increase the basis of their [Wind River] stock under I.R.C. 1367(a)(1)(A).” The Tax Court found the increase in basis and declared loss to be improper. The Third Circuit affirmed. View "Ball v. Comm'r of Internal Revenue Serv." on Justia Law
Giles v. Campbell
Giles was a prisoner in the Delaware penal system. Campbell worked at the Sussex Correctional Institution. Giles brought excessive force and deliberate indifference claims, 42 U.S.C. 1983, against officers, including Campbell, based on a confrontation during Giles’s transfer to Sussex and against others regarding his medical treatment after the incident. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of several defendants, including Campbell, on the basis of qualified immunity, held a bench trial, and entered judgment in favor of remaining defendants. The Third Circuit remanded the summary judgment. On remand, the Delaware Department of Justice, which had represented defendants, notified the court that Campbell had died in July 2006. Giles moved to substitute the administratrix of Campbell’s estate as a defendant. Neither the suggestion of death nor the motion to substitute was served on the estate. The district court denied the motion to substitute, holding that Giles’s claim was not pending under Delaware law and was extinguished. Giles proceeded to trial and the jury found in favor of the remaining defendants. The Third Circuit vacated denial of the motion to substitute, finding that the court lacked jurisdiction over the estate. View "Giles v. Campbell" on Justia Law
Lewis v. Alexander
Plaintiffs brought a putative class action challenging 62 Pa. Stat. 1414, which was enacted to regulate special needs trusts. The comprehensive Medicaid eligibility rules enacted by Congress generally mandate that trusts be counted as assets of those seeking Medicaid, but exempt special needs trusts, which are intended to provide disabled individuals with necessities and comforts not covered by Medicaid. Plaintiffs allege Section 1414 is preempted by 42 U.S.C. 1396p(d)(4). The district court held that all but one of the challenged provisions of Section 1414 was preempted, finding that plaintiffs had a private right of action under both Section 1983 and the Supremacy Clause. The court also held that Section 1414 was severable, certified a class, and appointed class counsel. The Third Circuit affirmed in part, agreeing that the case is justiciable and that plaintiffs have a private right of action. Section 1414's 50% repayment provision, "special needs" provision, expenditure provision, and age restriction are all preempted by federal law. The enforcement provision of Section 1414, however, when used to enforce provisions not otherwise preempted, is a reasonable exercise of the Commonwealth's retained authority to regulate trusts. View "Lewis v. Alexander" on Justia Law