Wednesday, August 4, 2021
Experts for the estate of Michael Jackson have offered a unique look at how the valuations were done for the "tax trial of the century." The case, Estate of Michael J. Jackson v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo 2021-48 was garnered massive media attention and was intently followed by valuation experts due to the "contentious issues" involved.
The dispute concerned valuation of Jackson's name and likeness, his 50% interest in a music publishing company (operating business), and an entity that held a catalog of music.
Experts joined together in a BVR Webinar panel that consisted of Jay E. Fishman (Financial Research Associates) and celebrity licensing expert Mark Roesler (CMG Worldwide). Fishman and Roesler worked together on valuing the name and likeness. The panel also included David Dunn, a music industry financial advisor for Shot Tower Capital. Dunn advised the valuation of the publishing entity and the music catalog.
One point of contention in the case was the huge difference between the valuations of the estate and the IRS. If the government had prevailed, the estate would have paid an extra $500 million in taxes.
The court sided with the estate on the name and likeness value as well as the value of the music publishing company, while the court sided with the IRS on the value of the music catalog.
A recording of the webinar, Power Panel: Estate of Michael J. Jackson v. Commissioner, is available here.
See Michael Jackson estate valuers give rare inside look, BVWire, August 4, 2021.
Special thanks to Mark J. Bade (CPA, GCMA, St. Louis, Missouri) for bringing this article to my attention.