IRS Rules that Mexican Fideicomisos or Land Trusts are not Trusts for U.S. Tax Purposes

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On June 6, 2013, the IRS released Revenue Ruling 2013-14, which holds that Mexican fideicomisos or Land Trusts are not trusts for U.S. tax purposes. “Fideicomisos have been an issue in the offshore disclosure world for quite some time,” said Jim Mastracchio, Co-Chair of BakerHostetler’s Tax Controversy Practice. The IRS initially took the position that the arrangement was a trust and assessed penalties against taxpayers who had not filed Forms 3520-A (Return of a Foreign Trust with a U.S. Owner) and 3520 (Return To Report Transactions With Foreign Trusts). The IRS also rarely entertained reasonable cause defenses to the imposition of penalties. The IRS’s newly-announced position could give rise to attempts by taxpayers to unwind their OVDP opt-outs or Form 906 closing agreements.

 


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