Annotations 05/2009

(type of debts defined in 11 U.S.C. Sec. 523(a) excludible in Chapter 12 proceeding regardless of whether debtor a corporation or individual; even though Sec. 523(a) could not be harmonized with Sec. 1228, Sec. 1228 controlling because it was more specific, applicable only in Chapter 12, than Sec. 523(a) which applies regardless of chapter). 

(petitioner not entitled to claim girlfriend's son as a qualifying child for purposes of child tax credit and earned income tax credit; relationship test of I.R.C. Sec. 152(c) not satisfied).

(chicken farm improperly denied right to present evidence that one of its poultry suppliers fraudulently inflated the number of chickens that were dead on arrival).

(some assets transferred to FLP not included in transferors gross estate because transfer was bona fide sale for full and adequate consideration with a business purpose).

(damage award petitioner received in settlement of sexual harassment claim against petitioner's employer was taxable income and not excludible under I.R.C. Sec. 104(a)(2); payment not received for physical injury or sickness).

(petitioner, a truck driver, was entitled to a deduction for meals and incidental expenses at the per diem rate for employees in the transportation industry; IRS disallowance of other unreimbursed employee expense deductions and determination of filing status upheld).

(court denied defendant's motion for judgment on the pleading concerning state attorney general's claim that defendant violated state law by adopting and enforcing a local ordinance that prohibited or limited normal agricultural operations; ordinance failed to provide any guidance as to how the defendant determined when activities associated with normal agricultural operations intensified to the level that transformed into an intensive agricultural activity; in addition, factual dispute remained over the term "commercial composting" which was undefined in the ordinance).

(court denied defendant's motion to strike plaintiff's request for stigma damages related to defendant's operation of sewage treatment plants that discharged pollutants into water which impacted plaintiff's irrigation activities and contaminated ground water and soil).

(planned improvements to road will interfere with plaintiff's gas pipeline easements, but such interference held not to be unreasonable; defendant may require plaintiff to remove or reinforce its pipelines at plaintiff's expense in order to accommodate the improvements to the road).

(a cooperative group purchasing organization that had gain as a result of the sale of real property that it owned was patronage-sourced and, thus, eligible for the patronage dividend deduction).

(modification of trust will not result in gift tax to grantor or beneficiaries, or estate tax to the grantor).

(evidence does not resolve whether plaintiff's officers knowingly falsified information in furtherance of a multiple entity crop insurance scheme based on the defendant's advice; defendant's motion for summary judgment denied).

(plaintiff complained that defendant's zoning laws were unconstitutional as applied to their proposed composting facility; court held that there was no equal protection violation when law enforced against plaintiff and not against competing composting facility; other facility in existence before zoning law became effective and was non-conforming use; substantive due process claim also failed because no evidence existed that defendant's request for revisions to plaintiff's site plan were arbitrary and capricious; plaintiff did not have protected property interest in using their land for composting because approval of composting activity was matter within discretion of township's planning commission).

(2007 law banning cockfighting is constitutional; law prevents bird owners from staging fights, but doesn't prevent them from owning or breeding birds; cockfighting not a Mexican culturally-protected use of fowl (under the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo)).

($3,100,000 claimed charitable contribution deduction for grant of conservation easement to Colorado land trust reduced by $1,107,625; amount of contribution limited to basis at time of contribution reduced by percentage decrease in entire property's fair market value as a result of the easement because taxpayer held property for less than one year before grant of easement; respondent's valuation expert report more accurate).

(BLM did not violate Administrative Procedures Act by not providing livestock grazing permittees a hearing on the record before implementing a decision that modifies the terms and conditions of the permittees' grazing permits; Taylor Grazing Act does not direct Secretary of Interior to provide a hearing each time the BLM issues a decision modifying the terms and conditions of a grazing permit, but only when those decisions are appealed administratively and only in connection with appeals; grazing permits are not licenses; provisions contained in federal appropriation bills from 1979-1992 did not permanently amend the TGA and, thus, did not apply at time BLM issued its Final Decision in 2005; BLM not required to bear burden of proof when appellant requests stay of final decision and cases cited by plaintiff inapplicable on the issue).Annotation

(value of rural residential and agricultural property affirmed; owner failed to present sufficient evidence that valuations were grossly excessive or the result of systematic exercise of intentional will or failure of plain legal duty).

(blanket farm premises loss/liability insurance policy which included theft as a covered peril did not cover loss for stolen heifers because plaintiff held heifers only under bailment arrangement, and policy excluded coverage for a bailee; plaintiff did not have ownership interest in heifers, but only a possessory interest).

(arranger liability under CERCLA narrowed such that joint and several liability not applicable when reasonable basis for apportionment of liability exists).

(plaintiffs acquitted of illegally taking an albino deer in violation of state (IL) law, but then filed Bivens action against investigating/arresting Conservation officers; defendants had probably cause for arrest and entitled to summary judgment on false arrest and unlawful detention claims; defendants entitled to qualified immunity on unlawful interrogation claims; defendants also entitled to summary judgment on false arrest and false imprisonment claims under state law; defendants also entitled to summary judgment on malicious prosecution claim under state law due to lack of malice).