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UNITED STATES V. ZACKS, 375 U. S. 59 (1963)

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U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Zacks, 375 U.S. 59 (1963)

United States v. Zacks

No. 44

Argued October 21, 1963

Decided November 12, 1963

375 U.S. 59


In 1952, a taxpayer received royalties on patents all substantial rights under which she had transferred to a manufacturer by way of an exclusive license. She and her husband reported such royalties as ordinary income in their joint return for 1952. This return was filed in 1953; the last payment of taxes thereunder was made in 1953; and a claim for refund was barred in 1956 by §322(b)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1939. By the Act of June 29, 1956, Congress amended the Internal Revenue Code of 1939 so as to add §117(q), providing that amounts received in such circumstances should be taxed as capital gains, rather than as ordinary income, and it made the amendment applicable to tax years beginning after May 31, 1950. In reliance on this amendment, the taxpayers filed in 1958 a claim for a pro tanto refund of their 1952 income taxes.

Held: Their claim was barred by the statute of limitations generally applicable to tax refund claims. Pp. 375 U. S. 59-70.

150 Ct.Cl. 814, 280 F.2d 829, reversed.

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