Tuesday, January 29, 2008

National Taxpayer Advocate asks Congress to prohibit tax strategy patents

The National Taxpayer Advocate recommended in her annual report to Congress three weeks ago that Congress bar tax strategy patents and limit their enforceability.

The recommendation didn't receive much media attention at the time the report was written but was the focus of a story in today's National Law Journal. (Subscription required.)

"If Congress does not bar them, it should require the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (PTO) to send any tax strategy patent applications to the IRS so that it can quickly address any abuse they may present and help the PTO identify obvious tax strategies that should not be eligible for patents," National Taxpayer Advocate Nina E. Olson wrote in the executive summary of the report.