Our Tax Practice Group advises clients on how to best take advantage of state and local tax credits and incentives, the tax efficient structuring of their business entities, as well as handling tax controversy work involving challenges to audits or tax statutes at administrative, state and federal levels. We have represented clients in matters involving challenges to assessments of sales and use tax, excise tax, severance tax and ad valorem (property) tax. Stone Pigman works with accountants, valuation experts, and in-house counsel in advising business clients on the tax aspects of the formation of new companies, asset sales, mergers and acquisitions, buy-sell agreements and other business contracts and deals.
Stone Pigman advises publicly-traded and privately-held companies on federal tax matters, including corporate and partnership tax matters. Stone Pigman also counsels executives of/and public companies on executive compensation matters. Our team approach to analyzing problems and advising clients is particularly effective in the tax arena.
Many of our lawyers in this practice group are Tax Law Specialists as certified by the Louisiana Board of Legal Specialization and/or hold a Master of Laws in Taxation.
Some of our representative matters include:
- Challenge to Diesel Fuel Sales and Use Tax. Stone Pigman successfully spearheaded a challenge in federal court to the imposition of Louisiana sales and use tax on diesel fuel purchased by railroad companies and used in interstate commerce for the transportation of freight by rail. The federal district court agreed that the Louisiana sales and use tax, as assessed against purchases of diesel fuel used or consumed in the transportation of property and imposed upon rail carriers, was discriminatory and prohibited by the Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act, 49 U.S.C. § 11501, and permanently enjoined the State from assessing, levying or collecting sales and use taxes on our client's purchase or use of diesel fuel for rail transportation purposes.
- Natural Gas Contract Trading Activities. Stone Pigman is representing a major oil company in a multi-million dollar tax dispute regarding whether natural gas contract trading activities are includable in the income and franchise tax revenue factor for the purposes of calculating the company's Louisiana Corporation Franchise Tax liability.
- Executive Compensation. Stone Pigman designed and implemented a Section 162(m)-compliant executive compensation plan for the key employees of a publicly-traded corporation as part of the firm's overall representation of the corporation, including its related SEC compliance work.
- Stone Pigman advised the principals of related limited liability companies, taxed as a mix of S corporations and partnerships for federal income tax purposes, on a substantial restructuring involving the conversion of certain entities to "disregarded entities" and various equity owners having "stock" in the surviving entity taxed as an S corporation and preferred, common and profits interests in the surviving entity taxed as a partnership.
- Stone Pigman has served as lead counsel for the owners of Cat Island off the coast of Gulfport, Mississippi. The firm represented the sellers in a series of transactions resulting in the sale of approximately half of the island to a national conservation organization involving complex federal income tax issues. That portion of the island was then re-conveyed to the National Park Service and is now part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore. The firm recently represented the sellers in another transaction in which BP bought a large portion of the remainder of Cat Island.
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