Champions Retreat Golf Founders, LLC v. Commissioner, No. 18-14817 (11th Cir. 2020)Annotate this Case
The Eleventh Circuit vacated the tax court's decision upholding the Commissioner's disallowance of a charitable deduction for taxpayer's donation of a conservative easement over property that included a private golf course and undeveloped land. The court explained that the deduction was proper if the donation was made for "the protection of a relatively natural habitat of fish, wildlife, or plants, or similar ecosystem," or was made for "the preservation of open space . . . for the scenic enjoyment of the general public" under I.R.C. 170(h)(4)(A)(ii) & (iii)(I). The court reasoned that, without the golf course, this easement would easily meet these criteria. The court held that the Code does not disqualify an easement just because it includes a golf course. Accordingly, the court remanded for further proceedings.