5th Cir. Affirms Tax Court's Valuation of New Orleans Facade Easement

A federal appeals court affirmed the U.S. Tax Court's $1.86 million valuation of a historic facade conservation easement for which the developers of the Ritz Carlton Hotel in New Orleans had claimed a $7.45 million charitable contribution deduction but vacated the gross overstatement of valuation penalty (Whitehouse Hotel LP v. Commissioner, 5th Cir., No. 13-60131, 6/11/14).

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued its second opinion on the case June 11 after previously reviewing the Tax Court's decision and remanding in 2010 with instructions for the Tax Court to consider all valuation methods, determine the parcel's “highest and best use” and consider the effect of the easement on an adjacent property (154 DTR K-2, 8/12/10).