All companies, organizations and individuals can expect to encounter issues in the tax arena. Polsinelli's Tax attorneys provide creative solutions and legal guidance on international, federal, state and local tax laws to entities in all major industries and tax status classifications.  Our attorneys partner with our clients to develop business solutions for both short-term and long-term planning.

Our Tax attorney’s strong reputation is built on its skills in sound and effective planning, in-depth analysis and favorable resolutions and outcomes, particularly in complex tax matters involving diverse businesses. Our attorneys pride themselves on innovative thinking and experience in structuring business formation, combinations, reorganizations, mergers and acquisitions, and liquidations in the most tax-advantageous manner.

If needed, Polsinelli's Tax attorneys' litigation experience spans all judicial forums including the U.S. Tax Court, federal courts, state courts and administrative tribunals throughout the country. The President actually nominated one of our attorneys to the United States Tax Court — and he decided to stay with us. Our attorneys’ experience and sound judgment provide our clients with appropriately assessed tax risks with the potential benefits of a judicial or administrative resolution of the issue.

Our attorneys specialize in the handling of individual and business tax matters including:

  • Tax consulting and planning for C corporations, S corporations, LLC's, partnerships, estates and trusts to optimize tax advantages
  • Corporate reorganizations
  • Merger and acquisition transactions
  • Business succession planning
  • Stock-for-stock and stock-for-assets transactions
  • Capital gain and installment sale planning
  • Tax planning for the receipt of real estate development incentives
  • State and local income tax
  • Compensation and benefit plans
  • Tax controversies/disputes and tax litigation
  • Sales and use tax
  • Property tax assessments and valuation
  • Independent contractor agreements
  • Tax-free exchanges of property (Section 1031)
  • Choice of entity
  • Partnership and LLC agreements, including economic and tax allocations of income and deductions

The Tax attorneys at Polsinelli can provide you with the innovative legal counsel you need.

Our attorneys bring both Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and advanced legal qualifications to tax advising for individuals and businesses. Offering both extensive tax planning, and tax audit and appeal services, we represent your interests in preserving income and protecting your assets.

With offices in Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Arizona, Illinois, Delaware and New York, we understand local, county and state tax issues for charitable tax planning, employment and independent contracting, partnerships and LLC structuring and audits or tax controversies where you live.

We’re experienced not only in handling income, sales and use, excise and property tax issues, but are well-versed in the kinds of tax controversies that can arise and are prepared to take appeals to the state tax appeal tribunal and the appellate courts of the state.

With a mix of small to large closely held business clients, we offer both corporate and individual tax advice, knowing that business wealth is often tied to individual wealth and tax obligations. Count on our attorneys for a coordinated approach. See our results in a comprehensive, sound tax plan.

Our State and Local Tax practice has considerable experience advising clients on a variety of state and local tax matters involving income, sales and use, inheritance and property taxes. This includes audits of taxpayers, appeals to administrative agencies, appeals to the courts, and judicial review of agency decisions. Polsinelli has litigated a number of state tax cases, including the following:

Income, Sales & Use Taxes:

  • AT&T Communications of the Southwest v. Director of Revenue (Mo AHC 2013). The Missouri Administrative Hearing Commission ruled in favor of the taxpayer and found that passive investment income earned by the taxpayer was no Missouri source income and was not subject to Missouri corporate income tax. The Commission followed the holding in an earlier case handled by the Polsinelli tax team for Medicine Shoppe International (discussed below), by ruling that the Medicine Shoppe International tax treatment of passive investment income was applicable to the taxpayer, which calculated its Missouri taxable income under a different section of the tax law.
  • Matter of the Appeal of Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. (Kansas COTA 2010). The Kansas Court of Tax Appeals ruled in favor of the taxpayer and held that income earned from the investment of excess cash proceeds was properly treated as non-business income and was not treated as business income that can be apportioned to Kansas for corporate income tax purposes.
  • Western Blue Print Co. v. Director of Revenue, 311 S.W.3d 789 (Mo. S. Ct. en banc 2010). The Missouri Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Missouri Administrative Hearing Commission and ruled that CDs prepared by the taxpayer from printed materials that were scanned, were not taxable. By applying the true object of the transaction test, the computer output produced by the taxpayer was not taxable.
  • Cabela's v. Department of Revenue (Kansas BOTA 2007). Represented the taxpayer in an appeal filed with the Kansas Board of Tax Appeals. The issues presented included whether the Internet sales of the taxpayer were subject to sales and use taxes in Kansas. The Department argued that the sales were taxable and that the taxpayer had nexus or physical presence in Kansas, because it had a retail store in the state that was owned and operated by an affiliated company. The appeal was settled by the parties.
  • American East Explosives, Inc. v. Director of Revenue (AHC No. 04-0422RS, 2006). The Missouri Administrative Hearing Commission ruled that the penalty assessed by the Department of Revenue could be offset by the amount of over collected taxes remitted to the Department of Revenue by the taxpayer. Considering that the taxpayer had previously remitted the entire amount of taxes over collected, the result was a 'wash' and no further payment by the taxpayer was required.
  • Medicine Shoppe International, Inc. v. Director of Revenue. 2005 WL 147585 Mo., 2005. Jan 25, 2005. The Missouri Supreme Court, looking at different years and different issues than were involved in the earlier case, held that income from temporary investments of excess cash is not Missouri source income and is not subject to taxation in Missouri under the Missouri single-factor formula.
  • UMB Bank, n.a. v. The City of Kansas City, Missouri, 121 S.W.3d 320 (W.D.Mo 2003). The Missouri Court of Appeals ruled that a City regulation imposing a restriction on taxpayers was contrary to Missouri law and was invalid and unenforceable. The case was remanded to the Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri, and the Circuit Court determined that the business expenses were "necessary expenses of operation" and issued a judgment in favor of the taxpayer.
  • Medicine Shoppe International, Inc. v. Director of Revenue. 76 S.W.3d 731 (Mo. S. Ct. 2002). The Missouri Supreme Court affirmed the rule that income from some passive investment sources is not subject to taxation in Missouri, but held that income from loans to franchisees did not meet this exemption.
  • Kansas City Power & Light Company v. Director of Revenue. 83 S.W.3d 548 (Mo. S. Ct. 2002). The Missouri Supreme Court ruled in a leading case involving intangible property that electricity is resold to hotel customers and is, therefore, not subject to sales tax when purchased by hotels.
  • Judy Tillis et al. v. City of Branson, Missouri. 945 S.W.2d 447 (Mo. S.Ct. 1997); 975 S.W.2d 949 (Mo. App. 1998). Local tourism sales tax was held to be unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, but refunds of taxes collected by vendors were not granted by the Court of Appeals.
  • Galamet v. Director of Revenue. 915 S.W.2d 331 (Mo. S. Ct. en banc 1996). Recycling equipment was held to be exempt from sales taxes.
  • Dean Machinery v. Director of Revenue. 918 S.W.2d 244 (Mo. en banc 1996). Replacement parts were held to be exempt from sales taxes.
  • Hyde Park Housing Partnership v. Department of Revenue. 850 S.W.2d 82 (Mo. S.Ct. en banc 1993). Apartment buildings were held to be exempt from sales taxes on electricity utility charges.
  • Gannett, Inc. v. Department of Revenue. Appealed to Administrative Hearing Commission (1990). Settled by stipulation of parties, the Missouri General Assembly adopted Sections 143.903 and 144.220.4 to authorize the settlement of taxes assessed for prior years and to provide that an assessment for future years is barred if there is an "unexpected" position taken by the Department of Revenue.
  • Hackman v. Department of Revenue. 771 S.W.2d 77 (Mo. S.Ct. en banc 1989). Refunds were granted to taxpayers of income taxes paid on military retirement benefits.

Property Taxes:

  • Nance v. State Tax Commission of Missouri. 18 S.W. 3d 611 (W.D.Mo. 2000). The Missouri Court of Appeals affirmed the rule that the assessed value of property is determined by valuing the fee interest and the leasehold interest separately and upheld the Commission's determination of value.
  • In the Matter of the Equalization Appeals of Prairie Commons Lawrence, LP. (Ks BOTA 1999). The Board of Tax Appeals ruled that the assessed value of apartments rented to the elderly and to low-income persons was excessive and ordered the value reduced for property tax purposes.
  • In the Matter of the Application of Auction Marketing Institute (Ks BOTA 1999). The Kansas Board of Tax Appeals ruled that a nonprofit organization that provides continuing education courses for professional auctioneers is an educational organization exempt from ad valorem taxation.
  • Dean Machinery v. Johnson County, Kansas (Ks BOTA 1998). The Kansas Board of Tax Appeals ruled that equipment leased to customers is exempt from personal property taxes. The case was not appealed by the County.
  • Kansas Tax Statutes Amended. Successful in changing provisions in the Kansas statutes that permitted counties to impose an intangibles tax on "money, notes and other evidence of debt" of taxpayers. The provision was repealed by the legislature in 1995 as a result of Polsinelli’s efforts.

Excise Taxes:

  • McLane Western, Inc. v. Colorado Department of Revenue, 126 P.3d 21 (Colo. 2005), cert. denied 127 S.Ct. 42 (2006). Represented a taxpayer organization, the Institute for Professionals in Taxation (IPT), in filing an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief in support of the taxpayer in the U.S. Supreme Court. The constitutional issues presented to the Supreme Court included whether the treatment of the taxpayer by Colorado was in violation of the U.S. Constitution, where an in-state distributor of tobacco products is treated differently than out-of-state or foreign distributors with respect to the state excise tax on tobacco products. The Supreme Court did not accept the appeal of the case, so the decision of the Colorado Supreme Court was upheld.
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February 4, 2013
eAlerts Updates
In this Tax and Business Planning alert, we cover key provisions of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act"), which President Obama signed into law on January 2, 2013, permanently extending the current tax rates for individuals earning up to $400,000 (joint filers earning up to $450,000), and which postpones automatic, across-the-board spending cuts for two months. The Act affects several other tax provisions for individuals, businesses, and estates.
January 22, 2013
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The IRS recently released the final version of Form 8938.  There will be filing obligations with respect to 2011 tax returns for certain individuals who meet the requirements. The rules and regulations regarding the Form 8938 reporting requirements are new and complex and need ample time for review with tax attorneys or tax advisors. Failure to properly file could result in significant penalties, including a $10,000 penalty, with an additional $50,000 for continued failure after notification from IRS.

February 2, 2012
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The IRS reopened the offshore voluntary disclosure program for taxpayers with unreported foreign accounts and/or unreported foreign income.  Taxpayers participating in the program may avoid criminal prosecution and resolve all outstanding offshore tax issues on a much more favorable basis than that afforded by the IRS on audit.
January 17, 2012