By Robert Merten and Andrew Appleby
The Maryland Tax Court granted a summary judgment motion exempting a Vermont-licensed insurance company from almost $24 million in corporate income tax, interest, and penalties. The short two-page order swiftly cites to and expressly follows the court’s previous order in the 2015 case, Nat’l Indem. Co. v. Comptroller of the Treasury, M.T.C. No. 14-IN-OO-0433 (Md. Tax Ct. 2015), in which the court determined taxpayers “engaged as a principle in the business of writing insurance contracts, surety contracts, guaranty contracts, or annuity contracts” are statutorily exempt from Maryland corporate income tax. The court determined in this case that because the insurance company was “engaged in the insurance business,” the court saw “no reason to distinguish this case from National Indemnity and will rely on the analysis therein,” resulting in a full taxpayer victory at the summary judgment stage. Leadville Ins. Co. v. Comptroller of the Treasury, M.T.C. No. 13-IN-OO-0035 (Md. Tax Ct. Mar. 30, 2017).