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State & Local Taxes

Our team handles matters ranging from day-to-day operational and strategic tax planning to state tax dispute resolution to property tax matters requiring complex valuation methodologies. Because of our interdisciplinary approach, we provide clients with comprehensive business strategy advice.

Whether dealing with the Department of Revenue, the State Board of Equalization or another governing body, clients can be assured that Waller's attorneys have the experience and know-how to handle the matter.

State and local tax (SALT) matters affect corporations, limited partnerships, limited liability companies and business trusts chartered/organized in Tennessee or doing business in this state. Waller's team of veteran SALT attorneys includes a former Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Revenue and is experienced in handling a wide variety of tax matters related to all manner of state and local taxes, including:

  • Business taxes
  • Franchise and excise taxes
  • Professional privilege taxes
  • Real property taxes
  • Sales and use taxes
  • Tangible personal property taxes

One of the value-added services provided by the tax group includes a proprietary searchable database of Board of Equalization opinions dating back to the early 1990s. These opinions are relied upon as precedent in matters before the Tennessee Board of Equalization and represent one of the most comprehensive collections of searchable Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) opinions available.

Litigation

Waller's attorneys are at the forefront of virtually every important state and local tax issue faced by Tennessee's business community. A substantial number of these matters involve franchise/excise tax disputes and sales/use tax disputes for large and midsize out-of-state corporations.

Our attorneys attempt to resolve issues at the audit level, at informal conferences with Department of Revenue hearing officers or through informal settlement discussions. Through these discussions, we stay abreast of evolving Departmental positions and are often in a position to pass on timely planning advice to our tax clients. While frequently resolved to the client's satisfaction at the administrative level, these matters must sometimes be litigated. Our experience with state and local tax litigation extends to other business matters for our clients as well, including the proper tax treatment of mergers, acquisitions, dispositions and additional transactions.

Since January 2000, we have helped taxpayers prevail in dozens of state tax cases in the Tennessee Chancery and Appellate Courts, the Tennessee Claims Commission and before the Tennessee Board of Equalization. Our major corporate taxpayer suits against taxing authorities include cases to recover:

  • Business taxes
  • Excise taxes
  • Franchise taxes
  • Fuel taxes
  • Income taxes
  • Liquor taxes
  • Property taxes
  • Retaliatory tax
  • Sales and use taxes

Coordination of litigation of similar tax issues (e.g., catalog use tax) for multi-state clients in varying state courts is vital, as is the coordination of restructuring to minimize the collective tax burden of multi-state operations.

We represent taxpayers in a wide range of property tax disputes before local assessors and the Tennessee State Board of Equalization. Our clients benefit from the firm's longstanding relationships with the nation's leading appraisal experts, as well as our reputation for taking property tax disputes to the judicial level when necessary to obtain fair treatment. We also represent taxpayers in disputes involving taxes not administered by the Tennessee Department of Revenue (such as premium taxes) before the Tennessee Claims Commission.

Corporate Relocation

Companies looking to relocate to Tennessee or expand operations in the state rely on Waller's team of attorneys who have experience in economic development and incentives. Our attorneys weigh the implications of various moves and scenarios and provide feedback on the impacts of each potential action. Once a decision has been reached, our attorneys can help plan a course for the relocation that will provide the best advantage in such a move.

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