Do you have adblock enabled?
 
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(The New York Times)   IRS: It's a felony to sell that $65m work of art because it includes a stuffed bald eagle, so even though its effective value is zero we're going to tax you $29m for it anyway. And by $29m we mean $40m   ( nytimes.com) divider line
    More: Asinine, IRS  
•       •       •

5893 clicks; posted to Business » on 22 Jul 2012 at 8:33 AM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



175 Comments     (+0 »)
 
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | » | Newest | Show all

 
2012-07-22 08:38:50 AM  
The IRS...
 
2012-07-22 08:44:40 AM  
And then there was this step in the process:

IRS: We value this at $15 million. Give us our taxes.

Heirs: It can't be sold so the value is $0, so we're not going to pay.

IRS: Okay. Now we value this at $65 million. Give us our monies and the penalty on not paying the first amount.
 
2012-07-22 08:44:46 AM  
What if the heirs announce they will destroy the piece of art then?
 
2012-07-22 08:47:07 AM  
I have no sympathy for inheritors of billion dollar art collections.
 
2012-07-22 08:58:43 AM  

RoyBatty: What if the heirs announce they will destroy the piece of art then?


They'd still owe the taxes and I'm guessing it's also a felony to destroy the stuffed eagle.

They mentioned they'd love to donate it to the museum where it's been sitting for the past great many years, but the IRS said they'd still owe the taxes on it.
 
2012-07-22 09:01:33 AM  
Rich people's problems...
 
2012-07-22 09:03:00 AM  
I weep for the billionaire heirs who are forced to pay money in the most unique and unusual of circumstances.
 
2012-07-22 09:05:11 AM  
Heirs to important art collections are often subject to large tax bills. In this case, the beneficiaries, Nina Sundell and Antonio Homem, have paid $471 million in federal and state estate taxes related to Mrs. Sonnabend's roughly $1 billion art collection, which included works by Modern masters from Jasper Johns to Andy Warhol. The children have already sold off a large part of it, approximately $600 million worth, to pay the taxes they owed, according to their lawyer, Ralph E. Lerner.

Dreadful reporting. The decedent's estate owes the taxes, not the "heirs."
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-07-22 09:06:04 AM  
If the IRS wins, does the government seize the eagle to pay for back taxes? If the government seizes the eagle does the state get full credit for the IRS-determined value? Will the government then destroy the eagle to prevent illegal sale?
 
2012-07-22 09:10:19 AM  
Those poor children! Having to pay taxes on $1B inheritance. They ought to pay every cent.
 
2012-07-22 09:14:47 AM  
Ask the IRS to come out for a meeting and sneak it into the trunk of their car. As they drive off, call the FBI and tell them a bald eagle is being transported. Either that or donate it to the IRS make them liable for the taxes.
 
2012-07-22 09:15:08 AM  
Logic dictates that the heirs are allowed to value the piece at zero, and in exchange, they donate the piece to the museum where it's on long term loan.

Of course this being the IRS, logic won't enter into the issue at any point.

And as for comments like "I have no sympathy for inheritors of billion dollar art collections." The family has already sold 600 million dollars worth of art just to pay taxes. What more do you want from them? Would it make you feel better if 100% was confiscated at death? Or would even that fail to satisfy your hate and envy?
 
2012-07-22 09:16:35 AM  
If only the IRS agents who make these decisions could have their names public, kind of like a NFL ref or MBL ump who scfrews up.
 
2012-07-22 09:18:41 AM  

BigBooper: Logic dictates that the heirs are allowed to value the piece at zero, and in exchange, they donate the piece to the museum where it's on long term loan.

Of course this being the IRS, logic won't enter into the issue at any point.

And as for comments like "I have no sympathy for inheritors of billion dollar art collections." The family has already sold 600 million dollars worth of art just to pay taxes. What more do you want from them? Would it make you feel better if 100% was confiscated at death? Or would even that fail to satisfy your hate and envy?


I'm pretty sure that the only thing that would satisfy Fark hate and envy of the wealthy would be if these people had every cent stripped from them and then were taken out in the street and beaten. I have a feeling that most Farkers would be part of the mobs that followed Bane in TDKR, pushing "evil rich people" into icy rivers.
 
2012-07-22 09:20:27 AM  

BigBooper: The family has already sold 600 million dollars worth of art just to pay taxes. What more do you want from them? Would it make you feel better if 100% was confiscated at death? Or would even that fail to satisfy your hate and envy?


There is no right or wrong amount. But for people who are worth over a billion dollars to try and weasel out of a 29 million dollar bill is a bit ridiculous.
 
2012-07-22 09:25:54 AM  
The 'Art Work' in question -
counterbalance.typepad.com

More of his work - from the Stoned Moon Series

www.kemperartmuseum.wustl.edu

/kinda like that one
 
2012-07-22 09:29:59 AM  

Lost Thought 00: But for people who are worth over a billion dollars to try and weasel out of a 29 million dollar bill is a bit ridiculous.


The amount doesn't matter if the debt is bogus.
 
2012-07-22 09:30:22 AM  

Lost Thought 00: BigBooper: The family has already sold 600 million dollars worth of art just to pay taxes. What more do you want from them? Would it make you feel better if 100% was confiscated at death? Or would even that fail to satisfy your hate and envy?

There is no right or wrong amount. But for people who are worth over a billion dollars to try and weasel out of a 29 million dollar bill is a bit ridiculous.


What's ridiculous is that there is a 29 million dollar bill in the first place. The item in question has a value of zero. I would expect anybody to "weasel" out of paying taxes on something that has no value, no matter what the amount.
If it were an income tax rather than an estate tax, this would be the equivalent of the IRS asking for income tax on community service hours, because while you aren't paid for them, you could have made ($x/hr) doing the same work. Doesn't make sense? You're right, it doesn't.
 
2012-07-22 09:30:46 AM  
I always thought the government should be forced to buy any item they appraise like this.

"You say this item is worth $65 million? Sure. Give me the money and I'll pay the taxes. Once the check clears, that is. We'll consider this 'eminent domain', so you can't come back later for the bogus charges we all know you're getting ready to toss in. "

The same goes for real estate or businesses. "So - this is a $200,000 house, even though nobody will buy it at half that price? Great! Sign here. Once I have the money in my bank account, I'll pay last year's taxes on the value you claim."
 
2012-07-22 09:47:45 AM  

BigBooper: Logic dictates that the heirs are allowed to value the piece at zero, and in exchange, they donate the piece to the museum where it's on long term loan.

Of course this being the IRS, logic won't enter into the issue at any point.

And as for comments like "I have no sympathy for inheritors of billion dollar art collections." The family has already sold 600 million dollars worth of art just to pay taxes. What more do you want from them? Would it make you feel better if 100% was confiscated at death? Or would even that fail to satisfy your hate and envy?


I think you are perceiving the Fark community wrong. The "hate and envy" is actually the sentiment that there IS such a thing as gluttony in wealth. Fark does not like gluttons whether it be fat fatties or fat wallets.

When a large percentage of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck the wealthy can come off as pigs when they complain about the cost of being wealthy. It really is in poor taste considering the state of the global economy.

That being said, yeah, it sucks to be taxed so much. Get over it gluttons. It is possible to live a wonderful life with balance and excess on a meger million.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-07-22 09:49:00 AM  
cirby

I have heard there are places in America where a landowner can insist the government buy at the appraised price.
 
2012-07-22 10:01:52 AM  
Is this different then the prosecution of pot dealers for not having tax stamps? I seem to recall that happening a few times. Both items have an effective value of $0. Would some law-talkin' guy care to weigh in on this? Would the existence of state tax stamps for products illegal to sell be considered a precedent?
 
2012-07-22 10:05:07 AM  
The IRS should realize they have a problem when the 99% agrees with the 1% on an issue.

If the object cannot be sold then it doesn't have a market value so it can't be taxed. It's the used diaper of artwork. If the IRS seized the item due to unpaid taxes then they would be in violation for transferring ownership of something it's illegal to transfer ownership of. If the IRS then went on to sell the item for unpaid taxes the would be committing another felony and entrapping another person in a felony.

Just for shiats and giggles I'd find a shyster lawyer to counter-sue the IRS on this one for entrapment.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2012-07-22 10:05:35 AM  
dickfreckle

In my state marijuana tax stamps tax stamps are not based on value. They are based on quantity, similar to cigarette taxes.

http://norml.org/component/zoo/category/marijuana-tax-stamp-laws-and -p enalties (Link is to NORML and may upset conservative workplace filters.)
 
2012-07-22 10:10:55 AM  
I also have very little sympathy for inheritors of billion dollar art collections, but in this case the IRS are being dicks.
 
2012-07-22 10:22:14 AM  
Interesting question.

vernonFL: I also have very little sympathy for inheritors of billion dollar art collections, but in this case the IRS are being dicks.


Why are they being dicks? If you get something very farking valuable, that's income and should be taxes. Now, you can debate how much something is worth, but its exactly the IRS' job to argue the point that it is worth something and you should be taxed on it.
 
2012-07-22 10:26:50 AM  

GAT_00: Those poor children! Having to pay taxes on $1B inheritance. They ought to pay every cent.


At what dollar amount do you stop supporting IRS dickery?

"Oh those poor people with their $1,000,000 inheritance..."? How about $100,000? $10,000?

Wrong is wrong, regardless of the net worth of the individual.
 
2012-07-22 10:32:11 AM  

RickN99: Wrong is wrong, regardless of the net worth of the individual.


That's true, but it has nothing to do with this.

RickN99: At what dollar amount do you stop supporting IRS dickery?

"Oh those poor people with their $1,000,000 inheritance..."? How about $100,000? $10,000?


$1,000,000 seems about right to me, but I wouldn't be against lowering it and making the tax progressive.
 
2012-07-22 10:33:50 AM  

Lost Thought 00: BigBooper: The family has already sold 600 million dollars worth of art just to pay taxes. What more do you want from them? Would it make you feel better if 100% was confiscated at death? Or would even that fail to satisfy your hate and envy?

There is no right or wrong amount. But for people who are worth over a billion dollars to try and weasel out of a 29 million dollar bill is a bit ridiculous.


You don't amass a billion by letting 29 million slide.

There definitely is a "right" amount: zero. FTA: "standard practice (is) valuing
assets according to their sale in a normal market. I.R.S. guidelines say that in
figuring an item's fair market value, taxpayers should "include any
restrictions, understandings, or covenants limiting the use or disposition of
the property.""
 
2012-07-22 10:35:38 AM  

BarkingUnicorn: There definitely is a "right" amount: zero. FTA: "standard practice (is) valuing
assets according to their sale in a normal market. I.R.S. guidelines say that in
figuring an item's fair market value, taxpayers should "include any
restrictions, understandings, or covenants limiting the use or disposition of
the property.""


Why is the right amount zero? The right amount should be the amount they would be able to get upon selling it? You don't think they could sell it to someone for a dollar?
 
2012-07-22 10:42:24 AM  
the wealth envy crowd sez give us all your money or else
 
2012-07-22 10:53:27 AM  

RickN99: GAT_00: Those poor children! Having to pay taxes on $1B inheritance. They ought to pay every cent.

At what dollar amount do you stop supporting IRS dickery?

"Oh those poor people with their $1,000,000 inheritance..."? How about $100,000? $10,000?

Wrong is wrong, regardless of the net worth of the individual.


Considering that Estate taxes don't kick in until 5 million dollars and the trend is up not down, I fail to see what you point is. You can speculate all you want, I'll be here in reality.

Whether an item can be sold or not under law has no bearing on whether something has value. It clearly has value, if it was donated to the museum, would museum not claim that it has increased the value of its art collection?

Don't want to pay Estate taxes, donate everything you have, otherwise, pay up, or she should have waited a few more years to die for when they had the amnesty period.
 
2012-07-22 10:57:43 AM  

dlp211: Don't want to pay Estate taxes, donate everything you have


Yep. If you're having to pay estate taxes, you're making a great big farking lot of money, and it is completely avoidable with donations. I shed zero tears.
 
2012-07-22 10:58:30 AM  

DamnYankees: Why is the right amount zero? The right amount should be the amount they would be able to get upon selling it? You don't think they could sell it to someone for a dollar?


The amount is zero because under federal law the family cannot sell the piece due to the inclusion of the eagle. If there is no open market, there can be no market value.
 
2012-07-22 11:00:23 AM  

dlp211: she should have waited a few more years to die for when they had the amnesty period.


Um...... I didn't know we had any option other than moving the date up.
 
2012-07-22 11:01:51 AM  

Anderson's Pooper: DamnYankees: Why is the right amount zero? The right amount should be the amount they would be able to get upon selling it? You don't think they could sell it to someone for a dollar?

The amount is zero because under federal law the family cannot sell the piece due to the inclusion of the eagle. If there is no open market, there can be no market value.


But this is obviously untrue. Can they sell it? Yes, clearly they can. If they walked up to a random person on the street and said "I'll give you this piece of art for one dollar", could they find someone to say yes? I think you'd have to agree they could. So you would agree that the market value is at least one dollar.

Don't confuse 'market' with 'legally sanctioned market'. It's not the same thing. Making something illegal to sell doesn't remove it from the market - it may reduce the value of the item because it will certainly be *harder* to sell, but it doesn't reduce the value to zero.
 
2012-07-22 11:03:04 AM  
"HEY! We were the only agency who could bring down Capone, so you're small potatoes, buddy!"
 
2012-07-22 11:15:48 AM  
Just give the art to the IRS let them deal with that ugly POC.
 
2012-07-22 11:23:24 AM  

Anderson's Pooper: The amount is zero because under federal law the family cannot sell the piece due to the inclusion of the eagle. If there is no open market, there can be no market value.


Not having market value != not having value. What if I own 5% of a business that is subject to a shareholder agreement restricting sale? Certainly that asset still has intrinsic value, even if I can't sell it on the open market.
 
2012-07-22 11:39:14 AM  
I'd like to see a billionaire bleed as much as the next person, but you have to call bullshiat on bullshiat. The IRS is in the wrong here. If the work can't be sold, it's worth nothing.

They should've invested in Nazi gold.
 
2012-07-22 11:40:50 AM  
It belongs in a museum!

/ so do you!
 
2012-07-22 11:41:33 AM  
The only people who think the IRS is evil for taxing inheritances are people who don't want to work for a living.

These taxes are in place specifically to prevent people from getting rich by doing nothing. If we all did that, there'd be no productivity and society would collapse.

If you have any expectations, desires or even envy for an inheritance, expect no sympathy from anyone working for a paycheck.
 
2012-07-22 11:47:06 AM  

EnviroDude: the wealth envy crowd sez give us all your money or else


You sound tired.
 
2012-07-22 11:56:50 AM  

BarkingUnicorn: You don't amass a billion by letting 29 million slide.


In this case you amass a billion by falling out of a rich vagina.
 
2012-07-22 11:59:02 AM  

DamnYankees: But this is obviously untrue. Can they sell it? Yes, clearly they can. If they walked up to a random person on the street and said "I'll give you this piece of art for one dollar", could they find someone to say yes? I think you'd have to agree they could. So you would agree that the market value is at least one dollar.

Don't confuse 'market' with 'legally sanctioned market'. It's not the same thing. Making something illegal to sell doesn't remove it from the market - it may reduce the value of the item because it will certainly be *harder* to sell, but it doesn't reduce the value to zero.


Except TFA specifically says "normal market" and the IRS code says that "|taxpayers should "include any
restrictions, understandings, or covenants limiting the use or disposition of the property."

Their own rules are more specific and clearly are not "what a crackhead is going to pay for it"
 
2012-07-22 11:59:10 AM  

RoyBatty


What if the heirs announce they will destroy the piece of art then?


That would be silly.

"Ooops, there was a fault in the wiring and that part of the building burned down. We no longer have the art object."
 
2012-07-22 12:04:01 PM  

DamnYankees: Why are they being dicks? If you get something very farking valuable, that's income and should be taxes. Now, you can debate how much something is worth, but its exactly the IRS' job to argue the point that it is worth something and you should be taxed on it.


They're being dicks because in those arguments over worth, they should be following the law. Their point is invalid.
 
2012-07-22 12:17:11 PM  

Englebert Slaptyback: RoyBatty

What if the heirs announce they will destroy the piece of art then?


That would be silly.

"Ooops, there was a fault in the wiring and that part of the building burned down. We no longer have the art object."


Doesn't matter. It was still property of the Estate and as such is taxed.
 
2012-07-22 12:18:45 PM  

midigod: DamnYankees: Why are they being dicks? If you get something very farking valuable, that's income and should be taxes. Now, you can debate how much something is worth, but its exactly the IRS' job to argue the point that it is worth something and you should be taxed on it.

They're being dicks because in those arguments over worth, they should be following the law. Their point is invalid.


You know what, they are being dicks, and being that they are the IRS, I want them to be dicks. I want them searching under every rock looking for unpaid taxes, because that is their farking job.
 
2012-07-22 12:28:04 PM  
 
Displayed 50 of 175 comments


Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | » | Newest | Show all


View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »
On Twitter





Top Commented
Javascript is required to view headlines in widget.

In Other Media
  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report