Tag Archives: IRS

Bill Davidson Estate In $2 Billion War With IRS

Bill Davidson, the late owner of the Detroit Pistons, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Guardian Industries — one of the country’s largest private companies — had a reputation for being aggressive.  The Pistons aggressively built two championship teams under his watch and was inducted into the NBA’s Hall of Fame in 2008.  His businesses thrived through his management.  But the IRS now says Bill Davidson was too aggressive in his tax-reducing estate planning techniques. Bill Davidson and Isiah

The IRS recently filed a petition in US Tax Court in Washington, D.C., claiming that Bill Davidson Estate owes up to two billion dollars in taxes.  Yes, that’s two Billion — with a capital “B”.  How could any individual rack up such a large tax bill?

Davidson, like many wealthy people who worry about estate taxes, gave away assets through gifts, trusts, and other transfers to his wife and other family members.  The IRS says that he undervalued the worth of these assets.  They feel his reported net worth of around $3 billion was really much Read more...

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The Redd Foxx Estate mess

There was an interesting article recently in AOL News about the Redd Foxx Estate.  The successful comedian and star of Sanford and Son (whose real name was John Elroy Sanford) died October 11, 1991.  Apparently, the Estate has no assets.  Even if it did, there’s an outstanding tax bill owed that’s a bit hefty — a whopping $3.6 million as of the day he died.  Redd Foxx estate

But the court-appointed executor for the estate is trying to change all that.  John Cahill, who is a public administrator in Las Vegas (where the estate is pending) was put in charge in 2007.  The prior administrator was Debraca Foxx, Foxx’s daughter, who was removed from her position in 2006.  Apparently, she failed to comply with a court order to account for what she had done with royalties and other monies the estate brought in under her watch.

In fact, Foxx’s widow (and fourth wife), Ka Ho Foxx, accused Debraca of stealing the money instead of paying down the tax debt.

Since Cahill took over,

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Wesley Snipes and the Pure Trust scam

In my Michigan probate litigation practice, I see many instances of scams and exploitation of seniors.  I’ve been working on a new case involving a “pure trust”.  Normally, I’m all in favor of trusts.  That is, legitimate trusts, such as the revocable living trusts that most reputable estate planning attorneys use.

Any trusts offered by a company rather than a lawyer should questioned right off the bat.  For example, I previously posted an article about “trust kits” and why they are dangerous.  Pure trusts, sometimes known as “common law trusts” or “constitutional trusts”, are even worse.

Since the early 1990’s, unscrupulous companies have been peddling these documents to help people place assets into what they describe as separate legal entities that are outside of the jurisdiction of the United States.  Why would that interest people?  Taxes.  You transfer your assets into these pure trusts, the sales pitch goes, and boom — no more taxes!

Sound too good to be true?  It is.  The IRS has been cracking down on pure

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