Voss v. Commissioner

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

796 F.3d 1051 (9th Cir. 2015)

The limit on home mortgage interest deductions under §163(h)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code is applied on a per-taxpayer basis.

Relevant Facts

Bruce Voss and Charles Sophy (the plaintiffs) were unmarried and owned a house together. For their 2006 and 2007 tax returns, the plaintiffs each claimed a mortgage interest deduction under §163(h)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. §163(h)(3) placed a $1.1 million limit on the amount of home-related debt on which a taxpayer could claim a deduction. Following an IRS audit, the plaintiffs were determined to be co-owners of the house and thus jointly subject to the $1.1 million limit. As a result, the IRS disallowed a portion of each of their claimed deductions. The plaintiffs brought suit in tax court. The IRS presented a 2009 memorandum from its Chief Counsel, which stated the debt limit applies on a per-residence basis.

The tax court affirmed the IRS’s determination. The plaintiffs appealed.

Issue

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Holding & Reasoning

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Concurrence

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Dissent

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Last updated:

December 13, 2020

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Procedural History

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Citations

796 F.3d 1051 (9th Cir. 2015)