Trouble in Bankruptcy Discharge of Tax Debt

One often used technique for resolving unpaid personal income tax debt is now in doubt.  Practitioners should take care in advising delinquent return filers that bankruptcy may be available, after a two year waiting period, to discharge the tax debt.

Whether or not a tax obligation is dischargeable in bankruptcy is, […]

Judicial Conference Increases Dollar Amounts in Bankruptcy Cases

The Bankruptcy Code is full of specific dollar limitations and allowances. These figures include dollar limits on eligibilty for use of Chapter 13 and many other amounts, such as the value of exemptions permitted to bankruptcy debtors under 11 USC §522. All of these dollar amounts are adjusted by the […]

Major IRS Settlement Changes Announced

The IRS has announced a major change that will affect most people with unpaid tax debt who would like to resolve that debt with the government but can not pay in full. The settlement program used by the IRS to adjust tax debts is called Offer in Compromise. It is […]

Medical Marijuana Is Not Tax Deductible

Congress enacted the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Tax Act of 1982 and amended the federal tax code to prohibit deduction of ordinary and necessary expenses related to the illegal sale of controlled substances.  A recent Tax Court decision highlights this law as another challenge to the feasibility of marijuana […]

Credit Card Payment of Tax May Not Be A Good Idea

Credit cards are becoming more common for use in payment of taxes.  With the rapid increase in electronic filing of tax returns, online credit card payments have increased as well.  Nearly 70% of 2010 personal income tax returns were filed electronically.  By 2012, the federal government hopes to increase online filing to 80% for all tax returns.  When the electronic filing has been done and there is tax to pay, it is convenient and even encouraged to pay by credit card.

Convenience of credit card tax payment comes at some cost.  The government uses third party companies to process payment in most cases and a “convenience fee” is charged to the taxpayer for the service.  The IRS has a webpage entitled “Pay Taxes by Credit or Debit Card” with information on how to do just that.  The IRS website suggests that fees for the card payment range from a low of 1.9% to a high of 2.35%.   The additional fee is included in the transaction at the taxpayer’s expense.  Most state and local governments will accept payment through such a company. […]

Who Qualifies as an Oregon Resident for Income Tax Purposes?

Oregon imposes a personal income tax on all residents of the state under the authority of ORS § 316.037(1)(a) (2010).  By statute, an individual is a resident of Oregon under two scenarios.

A.  An individual who is domiciled in Oregon, unless he a) does not have a permanent place of abode in Oregon; b) maintains a permanent place of abode in a place other than Oregon, and c) spends less than 31 days of a taxable year in Oregon. ORS § 316.027(A)(i)-(iii). […]

MERS Defeated Again in Oregon

We recently wrote a post describing a MERS defeat in Oregon Bankruptcy Court, and MERS (an acronym for Mortgage Electronic Services, Inc., an electronic registry) is in the news once again. This has not only been a hot topic in Oregon, but people around the nation have been attacking MERS as foreclosures mount and banks turn defaulting homeowners out into the streets. […]

Notify State Of IRS Audit Or Jeopardize Tax Dischargeability

Many states have their own personal income tax.  Generally these states also have laws that require a taxpayer to submit a copy of the IRS audit report if the federal liability is adjusted due to a reallocation of income or deductions on a previously filed return.   The failure to do so may cause bankruptcy discharge problems .  Changes to federal law contained in the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 may render any undisclosed increase in liability a non-dischargeable debt for bankruptcy purposes. […]

Oregon Homestead Exemption has Limits

The Oregon Homestead Exemption has been interpreted broadly by state and federal courts.  Even a mandatory security deposit has been found to qualify for exemption under ORS 18.395 and 18.402.  In a memorandum opinion by Judge Albert Radcliffe entered February 9, 2011, the court rejected the prepayment of $3,900 in rent as exempt under ORS 18.395.  In an unfortunate sidenote, Judge Radcliffe passed away just 10 days later at the age of 63. […]

MERS Is Not A Trust Deed Beneficiary in Oregon

Many home lenders use an entity called Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc., or “MERS” as a nominal party in loan transactions to facilitate an electronic central registry of note holders and servicers.  On its website, MERS claims many benefits to use of their services.  According to the website, MERS should be named in security instruments as a “nominee for the lender” in order to “eliminate the need for assignments and realize the greatest savings.”  In an Oregon deed of trust instrument, MERS is often named as “Beneficiary” in its nominee capacity.

A recent decision in the Oregon Bankruptcy Court by Chief Judge, Frank R. Alley, III, complicates matters dramatically for institutional trust deed holders using the MERS system when they attempt to foreclose defaulted home loans.  […]

Share this: