Conservation Easements

News & Analysis as of

IRS Notice: Conservation Easements for Charitable Giving

In Notice 2017-10, the Internal Revenue Service recently issued guidance on syndicated conservation easement transactions presumed to be used as tax shelters. This addition to the “listed transactions” under Section...more

Corporate E-Note - January 2017

The IRS has announced it will begin treating certain syndicated conservation easement transactions and “substantially similar” transactions as “listed transactions.” Notice 2017-20 published on December 23, 2016 (the...more

IRS Rules That Syndicated Conservation Easements With Inflated Appraisals Are Listed Transactions

In Notice 2017-10, the IRS has determined that certain conservation easements are now “listed transactions” for purposes of federal tax reporting. “Syndicated” conservation easements are conservation easements donated by a...more

IRS Updates Conservation Easement Audit Techniques Guide

On November 4, 2016, the IRS updated its Conservation Easement Audit Techniques Guide (CE Audit Guide) for the first time since March 15, 2012. According to the IRS’s introduction on its Audit Techniques Guide website,...more

Conserve Your Land, Preserve Your Estate: The Conservation Easement as a Land Use, Tax & Estate Planning Tool

We have all been told at one point or another that we simply “can’t have it all.” But for owners of recreational or agricultural land who desire to preserve the land, pass it down to their descendants as a legacy property,...more

2016 Florida Legislative Post-Session Report

Carlton Fields’s Government Law and Consulting Practice Group released its 2016 Florida Legislative Post-Session Report detailing significant bills that passed during the 2016 Regular Session of the Florida...more

Wealth Management Update - March 2016

March Interest Rates for GRATs, Sales to Defective Grantor Trusts, Intra-Family Loans and Split Interest Charitable Trusts - The March § 7520 rate for use with estate planning techniques such as CRTs, CLTs, QPRTs and...more

Conservation Easements FTW! Or, Eagles 1; IRS 0

What’s a real estate developer to do when its pristine development site, with beautiful ocean views and room for between 164 and 410 upscale residential units that *NEED NOT BE BUILT, is clogged with wildlife, including bald...more

Provisions Affecting Charities in Proposed Budget

The Administration’s proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2017 features several proposals that would impact charitable organizations and their donors, including proposals to streamline the private foundation excise tax on net...more

Fourth Circuit Affirms Tax Court Decision Holding Partnership Allocation of State Tax Credits Was a Taxable Disguised Sale.

In its recently issued opinion in the case of Route 231, LLC v. Commissioner, No. 14-1983, 2016 WL 97598 (4th Cir. 2016), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (the “Court”) affirmed the U.S. Tax Court’s decision...more

Donors and Charities Benefit Under New Tax Legislation

While most provisions of the Internal Revenue Code (“Code”) do not automatically expire, there are dozens that do. Included among the expiring provisions have been several intended to enhance charitable giving. Each has been...more

Burr Alert: 2015 Year End Tax Changes: What You Need to Know Before Your Bowl (Game)

Just in case they might impact your year-end tax planning, Burr's Tax Section has put together the following summary of recent changes to the tax law; changes which consist of making permanent many of the individual and...more

Lessons Learned in Conservation Partnerships

The Internal Revenue Code has provided an incentive under Section 170(h) for charitable conservation gifts. Since at least 2002 there has been an interest in combining through partnership those land owners who may have little...more

What is a Security? Even the SEC Can’t Always Tell

On February 27, 2015, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) determined that, contrary to claims by the SEC, interests in an LLC that invested in conservation easements as a tax deduction mechanism were not “securities” within the...more

NC Appellate Courts Hold Grandfather Mountain Must Pay Property Tax

In a decision that substantially protects property tax bases for local governments in North Carolina, the North Carolina Supreme Court has declined to review a Court of Appeals decision holding that one of North Carolina’s...more

Conservation Easements Are Not Required As Mitigation For Permanent Loss Of Farmland

In Friends of the Kings River v. County of Fresno, the California Fifth District Court of Appeal upheld the County of Fresno’s adoption of an Environmental Impact Report for a mining operation that will result in a permanent...more

Fresno County Aggregate Mine Fends Off Court Challenge

In Friends of the Kings River v. County of Fresno, No. F068818 (Cal. Ct. App. 5th Dist., Dec. 8, 2014), the Fifth Appellate District upheld Fresno County’s (County) approval of the Carmelita Mine and Reclamation Project...more

Virginia Tax Department Changes Conservation Easement Tax Credit Procedures

The Virginia Department of Taxation (“Tax”) is modifying its procedures for issuing land preservation tax credits and is trying to improve its customer service. At a meeting hosted by Molly Ward, Virginia Secretary of...more

Appraiser’s Error Results in Severe Penalties For Taxpayers who Convey Conservation Easement

In November 2013, the United States Tax Court upheld the charitable deduction for a conservation easement claimed on the taxpayers’ income tax return but reduced its value and upheld the 40 percent gross valuation...more

2013 Year-End Estate Planning Advisory

In this issue - - Federal Estate, GST and Gift Tax Rates - Annual Gift Tax Exclusion - Federal Income Tax Rates - President’s Budget Proposal for Fiscal Year 2014 - Important Planning...more

The Koontz Decision: Limits Conditions a Government can Impose on Developers  [Video]

The extent to which governmental authorities may condition land use permits on exactions and concessions from land use permit applicants has received extraordinary attention from the United States Supreme Court in recent...more

Tax Court Deals Another Blow to Conservation Easements

On June 24, 2013, the U.S. Tax Court disallowed a couple’s deduction for the donation of a conservation easement on the façade of a building to the National Architectural Trust, a qualified charitable organization. The court...more

Congress Reinstates Income Tax Advantages for Conservation Easements

Executive Summary: Congress has temporarily reinstated certain income tax advantages for donations of conservation easements. These advantageous provisions are scheduled to expire at the end of 2013....more

Effects Of American Taxpayer Relief Act Overshadowed By Sequester Talk

With much of the current news cycle discussing mandatory federal budget cuts known as the "sequester," one may tend to forget that Congress narrowly averted the country's fall over the "fiscal cliff " by enacting the American...more

Oregon Land Use Bills Aim to Limit Wetland Restoration

Three Oregon legislators have introduced bills on behalf of the Oregon Farm Bureau requiring land use permits for wetland restoration on farmland....more

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