Appellate court KOs discount for trapped-in capital gains taxes

BVWireIssue #233-3
February 16, 2022

shareholder dissent/oppression
fair value, shareholder oppression, discount, fair market value (FMV), minority interest, real estate, accounts receivable, capital gains, balance sheet

In a Louisiana case, a dissenting shareholder was withdrawing her shares in a company and the valuation of her interest was in dispute, so a trial was held. The experts for both sides agreed on the valuation method to be used: the adjusted net asset method. The company owned a lot of real estate, and its expert took a discount for the capital gains taxes that would be owed if the properties were sold. The expert testified that, even though the company had no intention of selling any of the properties, “it is common and accepted to recognize the trapped-in capital gains taxes as a liability on the balance sheet.” The trial court allowed the discount for the taxes. However, the appellate court overturned this, saying that, while there may be times when the discount can be taken, there must be a factual basis. In this case, a sale of the assets was an unknown future event, so it ruled that the trial court should not have allowed such a discount.

The case is ShopRite, Inc. v. Gardiner, 21-371 (La.App. 3 Cir. 12/29/21), and a case analysis and full court opinion can be found on the BVLaw platform

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