Articles Posted in Missouri Supreme Court

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At issue here was whether the sale of an aircraft and subsequent purchase of another from different entities can be considered a "trade-in" for purposes of the "taken in trade" tax exemption under Mo. Rev. Stat. 144.025 when an intermediary is used to facilitate the transaction. Here, Taxpayer purchased a 525B Cessna aircraft from Cessna Aicraft Company for $7.2 million. Taxpayer subsequently sold a 525A Cessna aircraft to C.B. Aviation for $4.7 million. Taxpayer used an intermediary in the sale. Taxpayer reported $2.5 million - the difference between the purchase price of the 525B aircraft and the sale price of the 525A aircraft - on its tax return. Taxpayer claimed it was entitled to a $4.7 million credit under section 144.025. The director of revenue determined Taxpayer was not entitled to the trade-in credit. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) to receive a tax exemption under section 144.025, the taxpayer must demonstrate that its relinquished property was "taken in trade" for the acquired property; and (2) because the use of an intermediary did not transform the separate sale and purchase transactions into one trade-in transaction, Taxpayer could not claim a trade-in exemption. View "Loren Cook Co. v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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In 2002, Respondent purchased an airplane from an estate. In 2010, the Director of Revenue determined that Respondent should have paid use taxes because he had not paid sales tax on the purchase and because he stored the airplane in Missouri. The Administrative Hearing Commission determined that Respondent did not owe use tax because the Director did not prove that Respondent purchased the airplane out of state. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that the Commission erred in determining that Respondent did not owe the use tax assessed by the Director because the Commissioner's conclusion that the use tax applies only to goods that are purchased outside the state and then used or stored within the state was incorrect. View "Featherston v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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Saint Charles County was the sole owner and operator of the Saint Charles County Family Arena (Arena). After collecting taxes for several years on the fees, charges, and sales at the Arena, the County sought a refund for a three-year period. Specifically, the County sought a tax exemption pursuant to Mo. Rev. Stat. 144.030.2(17). The Director of Revenue denied the County's claims, and the Administrative Hearing Commission upheld the decision. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the County was not entitled to the sales and use tax exemption it claimed where it did not present clear and unequivocal proof it met the requirements of Section 144.030.2(17) to be entitled to an exemption. View "Saint Charles County v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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Plaintiff owned and operated a public golf course and rented golf carts to golfers. The director of revenue issued an assessment of unpaid sales taxes on the golf cart rentals, finding that because the cart rentals were mandatory, they were subject to sales tax regardless of the fact that Plaintiff had paid sales tax when it purchased the carts. The administrative hearing commission reversed, finding that Plaintiff did not owe sales tax on the golf cart rentals because it previously paid sales tax on its purchase or lease of the carts. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that, pursuant to Mo. Rev. Stat. 144.020.1(8) and Westwood Country Club v. Director of Revenue, Plaintiff was not required to charge sales tax on the golf cart rentals. View "PF Golf, LLC v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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The Director of Revenue determined that Jonathan Eilian underpaid his 2006 Missouri taxes because he used his federal "net operating loss" (NOL) to offset income that was taxable under Missouri law but not taxable under federal law. Eilian brought a complaint before the Administrative Hearing Commission challenging the Director's decision. The Commission ruled in favor of Eilian. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that Brown Group Inc. v. Administrative Hearing Commission was dispositive of the legal issues in this appeal and precluded Eilian from using his NOL to offset all of his Missouri-taxable income. Remanded to the Commission to recalculate Eilian's Missouri tax liability for 2006. View "Eilian v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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In 2001, Taxpayers bought two parcels located within a residential subdivision that was zoned residential. In 2009, the county assessor reclassified the property from residential to agricultural. The assessor assumed a commercial use on the property and thus valued it as commercial. The county board of equalization affirmed the assessor's determinations. Taxpayers appealed to the State Tax Commission (STC). A hearing officer found the appropriate classification for the property was commercial and that it should be assessed at the commercial rate as opposed to the agricultural rate. The STC affirmed the hearing officer's decision. The circuit court affirmed the STC's decision as being supported by competent and substantial evidence. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the STC's application of the factors set forth in Mo. Rev. Stat. 137.016.5 to Taxpayers' property was supported by substantial and competent evidence in the record. View "Bateman v. Rinehart" on Justia Law

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American Airlines submitted a request to the director of revenue for a refunds of sales tax it alleged it overpaid between 2004 and 2007, asserting that its sales of aviation jet fuel to two of its contractors were not subject to taxation under Mo. Rev. Stat. 144.020 because they did not constitute "sales at retail" as defined by Mo. Rev. Stat. 144.010. American asserted that it never transferred title or ownership of the fuel to the purchasers because it restricted the use of the purchased fuel so as to exercise dominion and control over it. The director denied American's request. American filed a complaint with the administration hearing commission, which determined that American was not entitled to a refund. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the record supported the factual determination that, upon delivery of the fuel, American transferred title and ownership to its contractors; and (2) therefore, the transactions constituted "sales at retail" and were subject to taxation under section 144.020. View "Am. Airlines, Inc. v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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801 Skinker Boulevard Corporation (801), a corporation operating as a residential cooperative, sought a refund for sales taxes under Mo. Rev. Stat. 144.030.2, which indicates that utilities purchased for residential units for common areas and facilities shall be deemed to be for domestic use. The refund request concerned state sales tax charged and paid on electric and natural gas utilities purchased from 2006 through 2009. 801 filed for a refund of sales tax on its Union Electric (Ameren) and Laclede Gas Company (Laclede) bills. Ameren and Laclede also filed for refunds on behalf of 801. Ameren and Laclede's applications were denied. 801, Ameren, and Laclede (Taxpayers) subsequently filed a request for a refund of sales tax with the Administrative Hearing Commission, alleging that the utilities were purchased for domestic use by the individual owners and residents of 801 in accordance with section 144.030.2. The Commission denied the request. The Supreme Court reversed and ordered a full refund of the sales tax paid, holding that Taxpayers were entitled to the exemption and refund of their sales taxes pursuant to section 144.190.2, as 801's utility purchases were deemed by statute to be for "domestic use" and, thus, were exempt from sales tax. View "801 Skinker Boulevard Corp. v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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Appellant operated an herbicide and pesticide manufacturing plant. After a tax audit, the director of revenue issued Appellant use tax assessments on its chemical purchases for its Missouri plant that covered tax period July 1, 2000 through December 31, 2001. Appellant appealed the assessments to the administrative hearing commission, claiming that it was entitled to tax exemptions available to a material recovery processing plant. The commission determined that Appellant's chemical plant did not qualify as a material recovery processing plant for purposes of applying the claimed tax exemptions. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the commission did not err in rejecting Appellant's claims that it was entitled to tax exemptions related to operation of a material recovery processing plant. View "BASF Corp. v. Dir. of Revenue" on Justia Law

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This case involved a challenge to the imposition of municipal taxes on SLAH, LLC, a business entity that owned a hotel located in the city of Woodson Terrace. The city appealed from the declaratory judgment entered against it on SLAH's claim that the city was prohibited by Mo. Rev. Stat. 94.270.3 from imposing a hotel license tax rate in excess of $13.50 per room, per year. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) the remedy afforded to SLAH under Mo. Rev. Stat. 139.031 was adequate under the circumstances, and accordingly, it was the exclusive remedy for challenging the legality of the city's hotel license tax rates; and (2) because a declaratory judgment action is improper when an adequate remedy exists at law, the trial court erred in entering judgment in favor of SLAH. View "State ex rel. SLAH, LLC v. City of Woodson Terrace" on Justia Law