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Cramer v. Commissioner

    Brief Fact Summary. Petitioner took property tax deductions on three different properties. One she owned outright, one was owned by her mother, and one she had sold to William Osborn but retained title.

    Synopsis of Rule of Law. Real property taxes are deductible only by person upon whom they are imposed.

    Facts. Petitioner sold her home to William Osborn in August 1963. Osborn agreed to make monthly payments and to pay property taxes, but title remained with Petitioner. Osborn failed to pay the property taxes in 1964 and 1965, and Petitioner eventually obtained a default judgment to recovery the property for failing to make payments. Petitioner resold the property and paid property taxes in 1966. Petitioner also made property tax payments on her mother’s home and on her own home. She deducted these property tax payments on her 1965 and 1966 returns.

    Issue. Were the property taxes paid on her mother’s home and on Osborn’s home deductible?

    Held. Judge Featherston issued the opinion for the Tax Court in holding that Petitioner should not be allowed to deduct the taxes paid on her mother’s home, but should be allowed to on the Osborn home.

    Discussion. In applying the rule that property taxes are deductible by the person upon whom they are imposed, the Tax Court found that the taxes paid by Petitioner on her mother’s property were imposed on her mother and were not deductible by Petitioner. Further, the taxes on the Osborn property were deductible by Petitioner because Petitioner still held title to the property and the taxes were imposed on he.


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