This post was originally published on Forbes Aug 13, 2015
It doesn't seem like going to church should count against a taxpayer , but that is what happened last month in a decision of the Maryland Court of Special Appeals. Here is the story.
When Mr. McDermond learned of this new assignment he consulted with Joseph O'Neill of Parente Randolph LLC (I note in passing that Parente Randolph merged with another regional firm and was gobbled up by Baker Tilly, which is number 12 in the country by one ranking. Mr. O'Neill is stilling hanging in there, which indicates that he either has more on the ball than I do or that going from regional to not quite Big Ten is easier than going from regional to not quite Big Four).
On June 16, 2006, one day after the purported meeting between McDermond and O'Neill, Under Armour and McDermond amended the Assignment Letter such that McDermond's “[e]xpected [l]ength of [a]ssignment” was changed to “[i]ndefinite.” O'Neill's June 28, 2006 email to McDermond further referenced the fact that McDermond “had the assignment contract amended to be open-ended, rather than for the current two-year period[.]”
The Maryland Tax Court gave little weight to the amendment of the Assignment Letter on June 16, 2006 that purported to alter the expected length of McDermond's assignment in the Netherlands from two years to “[i]ndefinite.” The Maryland Tax Court found that, “[a]s a result of this change, Under Armour ...didn't make any changes to [McDermond's] employment contract ...[and] didn't make any changes to any agreements with the Netherlands for work permits or other purposes.
Before moving to the Netherlands, McDermond occasionally attended religious services at a Baltimore church. After relocating to the Netherlands in February 2006, McDermond occasionally attended religious services at a church in Amsterdam, to which he made some charitable contributions. When McDermond would travel back to the United States on business during his assignment in the Netherlands, he would occasionally attend services at the Baltimore church he attended before his move. McDermond further continued to make charitable contributions to his Baltimore church while living in the Netherlands.