Can Intellectual Property Laws Reduce Federal Deficits
By allowing tax schemes to be patentable, loopholes might be more expensive to pursue. On the other hand, if people can collect royalties for uncovering loopholes, the search for such strategies might intensify. In any case, this new wrinkle show how ridiculous Intellectual Property can be.
Norris, Floyd. 2006. “You Can’t Use That Tax Idea. It’s Patented.” New York Times (20 October).
“Dennis B. Drapkin, a tax lawyer with Jones Day in Dallas, … is chairman of a task force of the American Bar Association’s tax section that will discuss the issue today in Denver. He said that after one conference where tax strategies were discussed, participants got a letter warning that using one idea mentioned would be in violation of a patent.”
“There is even one case pending in federal court in Connecticut, in which an organization called Tax Strategies Group complains that John W. Rowe, the former chief executive of Aetna, infringed on its patent by using a certain type of trust to minimize taxes on profits from stock options. The group wants Mr. Rowe to be barred from using that strategy unless he buys a license from them.”