PA Supreme Court Denies Reconsideration of Decision Addressing Construction Contracts with Non-Exempt Entities


As reported in the February 2012 edition of PA Tax Law News, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court reversed the Commonwealth Court’s 2009 decisions in Northeastern Pennsylvania Imaging Center v. Commonwealth and Medical Associates of the Lehigh Valley, P.C. v. Commonwealth, which had held that MRIs and other medical scanning systems installed in the taxpayers’ imaging centers became part of the “real estate,” so that the taxpayers were entitled to a refund of sales tax paid on their purchase and lease of installed scanning systems. The Supreme Court held that the scanning systems retained their identity as tangible personal property after installation under the test enunciated by the Court in Commonwealth v. Beck Electric Construction, Inc., 403 A.2d 553 (Pa. 1979). See Northeastern Pennsylvania Imaging Center v. Commonwealth, 35 A.3d 752 (Pa. 2011). The Beck test involves a determination as to whether property is “easily” removable without damage to itself or to the surrounding real estate.

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