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Gregory v. Helvering

United States Supreme Court
293 U.S. 465 (1935)


Ms. Gregory (plaintiff) owned all the stock of the United Mortgage Corporation (United) and was entitled to receive dividends from United. Among its assets, United owned 1,000 shares of the Monitor Securities Corporation (Monitor). To avoid the ordinary tax treatment of dividend payments received from United, Gregory facilitated a corporate reorganization of United. As a result of this reorganization, United transferred the Monitor shares to Gregory instead of making dividend payments. Gregory fully complied with the technical statutory requirements for a corporate reorganization. Because the transfer of a corporation’s stock to its shareholders during a reorganization constituted capital gain, Gregory treated United’s transfer of Monitor stock to her as capital gain on her federal tax return. The federal tax commissioner (commissioner) (defendant) determined a deficiency in Gregory’s taxes. Gregory petitioned the Board of Tax Appeals (Board) for review, and the Board ruled for Gregory. The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed in favor of the commissioner. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.

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