AICPA Applauds Senators Baucus, Grassley for Introduction of Legislation Putting a Stop to Tax Strategy Patents

January 25, 2011

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Jan. 25, 2011) – The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants applauds U.S. Senators Max Baucus and Chuck Grassley for their bipartisan introduction of legislation to put a stop to the practice of patenting methods for complying with the U.S. tax code.


The bill, which is included in larger patent reform legislation pending in the Senate Judiciary Committee, would provide that tax planning strategies are not patentable by deeming any tax strategy patent to be “within the prior art” under patent law, or essentially already part of the public domain.


“The AICPA strongly supports the legislation that Senators Baucus and Grassley are introducing this week and we applaud the decision by Senators Leahy, Grassley and Hatch to include it in their comprehensive patent reform bill,” Barry Melancon, president and CEO of the AICPA, said.


“The problems associated with tax strategy patents, which troublingly have already been granted in areas such as charitable giving, estate and gift taxes, pension plans, and deferred compensation, are multiple and complex. They undermine the integrity of our tax code and will unnecessarily complicate the ability of taxpayers to comply with the code,” Melancon said.


Senator Patrick Leahy, Vermont Democrat, is the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and Senator Orrin Hatch is the senior Republican.