9th Circuit Could OK Big Religious Education Tax Break - 2008-02-08
Judges on a 9th Circuit panel hearing a New York couple's appeal of an adverse Internal Revenue Service tax ruling this week reportedly appeared sympathetic to the couple's claim that the federal agency isn't treating members of all religious groups fairly concerning charitable deductions for educational expenses.
That could potentially mean a significant tax break for those claiming deductions for religious education, reports the New York Sun.
The appellants in the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals case, Michael and Marla Sklar, are Orthodox Jews. They took deductions for some of the private religious school tuition they paid for their children, and for after-school classes in Jewish law. Although the IRS eventually disallowed these deductions by the Sklars, starting in 1994, the agency meanwhile reportedly has allowed members of the Church of Scientology, under a 1993 settlement agreement, to take substantial deductions for "religious training and services."