Monday, July 24, 2017
The date for the Joint TE/GE Council Meeting has been announced.
The TE/GE Councils were formed to maintain lines of communication between practitioners and the IRS TE/GE Division (and related areas) to:
- open and maintain lines of communication between the TE/GE Division (the “Division”) of the Internal Revenue Service (the “IRS”) and the practitioner community within the regional area,
- provide the Division with the thinking of the practitioner community on procedural and systemic matters,
- provide practitioners a forum to share their concerns with the IRS regarding both policies and specific tax issues and procedures, and
- educate the practitioner community.
The Councils work with the IRS TE/GE Division (and related areas) to accomplish these goals. Each of the five regional councils includes two subgroups: exempt organizations and employee plans. Programs are open to the public.
The inheritance system is beset by formalism. Probate courts reject wills on technicalities and refuse to correct obvious drafting mistakes by testators. These doctrines lead to donative errors, or outcomes that are not in line with the decedent’s donative intent. While scholars and reformers have critiqued the intent-defeating effects of formalism in the past, none have examined the resulting distribution of donative errors and connected it to broader social and economic inequalities. Drawing on egalitarian theories of distributive justice, this Article develops a novel critique of formalism in the inheritance law context. The central normative claim is that formalistic wills doctrines should be reformed because they create unjustified inequalities in the distribution of donative errors. In other words, probate formalism harms those who attempt to engage in estate planning without specialized legal knowledge or the economic resources to hire an attorney. By highlighting these distributive concerns, this Article reorients inheritance law scholarship to the needs of the middle class and crystallizes distributive arguments for reformers of the probate system.