In the case of Harvey C. Hubbell Trust et al. v. Commissioner; T.C. Summary Opinion 2016-67 the IRS was disallowing all of the charitable contributions claimed by the trust for 2009. The IRS did not deny that the contributions were made. The agency also did not claim the recipients were not qualified charitable organizations. Rather, the IRS claimed the contributions were not made according to the terms of the will that established the trust.
The trust in question had been making charitable contributions for many years (going back to 1985) and in quite substantial amounts. For instance, in 1985 the trust made (and deducted) charitable contributions of $384,976, and had made contributions, often in excess of $100,000, for many years between 1985 and 2008. Apparently the IRS had never raised any issue with regard to these contributions—likely because the IRS had never examined the trust.
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