Category: Cost Contribution Arrangements

A Cost Contribution Arrangement (CCA) is a framework agreed among business enterprises to share the costs and risks of developing, producing or obtaining assets, services, or rights, and to determine the nature and extent of the interests of each participant in those assets, services, or rights.

A CCA is a contractual arrangement rather than necessarily a distinct juridical entity or permanent establishment of the participants. In a CCA, each participant’s proportionate share of the overall contributions to the arrangement will be consistent with the participant’s proportionate share of the overall expected benefits to be received under the arrangement.

While Cost Contribution Arrangements for research and development of intangible property are perhaps most interesting, CCAs need not be limited to such activities. CCAs could exist for any joint funding or sharing of costs and risks, for developing or acquiring property or for obtaining services.

See on this issue TPG 2017, Chapter VIII

US vs Amazon, August 2019, US Court of Appeal Ninth Circut, Case No. 17-72922

US vs Amazon, August 2019, US Court of Appeal Ninth Circut, Case No. 17-72922

In the course of restructuring its European businesses in a way that would shift a substantial amount of income from U.S.-based entities to the European subsidiaries, appellee Amazon.com, Inc. entered into a cost sharing arrangement in which a holding company for the European subsidiaries made a “buy-in” payment for Amazon’s assets that met the regulatory definition of an “intangible.” See 26 U.S.C. § 482. Tax regulations required that the buy-in payment reflect the fair market value of Amazon’s pre-existing intangibles. After the Commissioner of Internal Revenue concluded that the buy-in payment had not been determined at arm’s length in accordance with the transfer pricing regulations, the Internal Revenue Service performed its own calculation, and Amazon filed a petition in the Tax Court challenging that valuation. At issue is the correct method for valuing the preexisting intangibles under the then-applicable transfer pricing regulations. The Commissioner sought ... Continue to full case
US vs Altera Corp, June 7, 2019, US Court of Appeal, Nos 16-70496 and 16-70497

US vs Altera Corp, June 7, 2019, US Court of Appeal, Nos 16-70496 and 16-70497

The US Court of Appeal had reversed a decision from the Tax Court that 26 C.F.R. § 1.482-7A(d)(2), under which related entities must share the cost of employee stock compensation in order for their cost-sharing arrangements to be classified as qualified cost-sharing arrangements and thus avoid an IRS adjustment, was invalid under the Administrative Procedure Act. The Court of Appeal ruled that the Commissioner of Internal Revenue had not gone beyond the authority delegated under 26 U.S.C. § 482, and that the Commissioner’s rule-making authority complied with the Administrative Procedure Act. The Opinion was shortly after (August 7, 2018) withdrawn by the Court of Appeal. A final Decision was issued June 7, 2019, reaching the conclusion that 26 C.F.R. § 1.482-7A(d)(2), under which related entities must share the cost of employee stock compensation in order for their cost-sharing arrangements to be classified as qualified cost-sharing ... Continue to full case
US vs Medtronic, August 2018, U.S. Court of Appeals, Case No:  17-1866

US vs Medtronic, August 2018, U.S. Court of Appeals, Case No: 17-1866

The IRS was of the opinion, that Medtronic erred in allocating the profit earned from its devises and leads between its businesses located in the United States and its device manufacturer in Puerto Rico. To determine the arm’s length price for Medtronic’s intercompany licensing agreements the comparable profits method was therefor applied by the IRS, rather than the comparable uncontrolled transaction (CUT) used by Medtronic. Medtronic brought the case to the Tax Court. The Tax Court applied its own valuation analysis and concluded that the Pacesetter agreement was the best CUT to calculate the arm’s length result for intangible property. This decision from the Tax Court was then appealed by the IRS to the Court of Appeals. The Court of Appeal found that the Tax Court’s factual findings were insufficient to enable the Court to conduct an evaluation of Tax Court’s determination. Specifically, the Tax Court ... Continue to full case
US vs Altera Corp, July 2018, US Court of Appeal, Nos 16-704996

US vs Altera Corp, July 2018, US Court of Appeal, Nos 16-704996

The US Court of Appeal reversed a decision from the Tax Court that 26 C.F.R. § 1.482-7A(d)(2), under which related entities must share the cost of employee stock compensation in order for their cost-sharing arrangements to be classified as qualified cost-sharing arrangements and thus avoid an IRS adjustment, was invalid under the Administrative Procedure Act. The Court of Appeal ruled that the Commissioner of Internal Revenue had not gone beyond the authority delegated under 26 U.S.C. § 482, and that the Commissioner’s rule-making authority complied with the Administrative Procedure Act. The Opinion was shortly after (August 7, 2018) withdrawn by the Court of Appeal – see below. A new Decision was issued June 7, 2019 US-vs-Altera-16-70496 The Annulment issued August 7, 2018: US-vs-Altera-16-70496-Withdrawn Share: ... Continue to full case
US vs Microsoft, May 2017, US District Court

US vs Microsoft, May 2017, US District Court

In an ongoing transfer pricing battle between Microsoft and the IRS related to Microsofts’ use of a IP subsidiary in Puerto Rico to shift income and reduce taxes, the District Court of Washington has now ordered Microsoft to provide a number of documents as requested by the IRS. US vs Microsoft May 2017 US District Court In a prior decision from November 2015 the District Court ruled, that the IRS’ use of an external representative was not in conflict with US regulations. Microsoft argued that the IRS’ use of an outside law firm, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, to assist in the audit was an improper delegation of its authority to examine taxpayer books. The Court ruled that the government had a legitimate purpose in continuing to pursue the audit, and that the use of Quinn Emanuel was not a breach of IRS authority that ... Continue to full case
US vs. Amazon, March 2017, US Tax Court, Case No. 148 T.C. No 8

US vs. Amazon, March 2017, US Tax Court, Case No. 148 T.C. No 8

Amazon is an online retailer that sells products through Amazon.com and related websites. Amazon also sells third-party products for which it receives a commissions. In a series of transactions  in 2005 and 2006, Amazon US transferred intangibles to Amazon Europe, a newly established European HQ placed in Luxembourg. A Cost Sharing Arrangement (“CSA”), whereby Amazon US and Amazon Europe agreed to share costs of further research, development, and marketing in proportion to the benefits A License Agreement, whereby Amazon US granted Amazon Europe the right to Amazon US’s Technology IP An Assignment Agreement, whereby Amazon US granted Amazon Europe the right to Amazon US’s Marketing IP and Customer Lists. For these transfers Amazon Europe was required to make an upfront buy-in payment and annual payments according to the cost sharing arrangement for ongoing developments of the intangibles. In the valuation, Amazon had considered the intangibles to have ... Continue to full case
US vs Altera. February 2016, Appeal

US vs Altera. February 2016, Appeal

On July 27, 2015 the United States Tax Court issued its ruling regarding the petition filed by Altera Corporation and its subsidiaries against the Commissioner of Internal Revenue. The court found in favor of Altera, and concluded that on an arm’s length basis employee profit sharing should not be included in compensation between related parties under Qualified Cost Sharing Agreements. The case was appealed by the Commissioner of Internal Revenueon February 23, 2016. In the appeal the Commissioner argues that the Tax Court erred as a matter of law in holding that the 2003 cost-sharing amendments are invalid to the extent they require the sharing of stock based compensation costs. In July 2018 the Court of Appeal reversed the decision from the Tax Court and found in favor of the Commissioner. US-vs.-Altera-Tax-Court-Decision-2015 And US-vs.-Altera-Brief-Appellant-16-70497 Share: ... Continue to full case
Canada vs. Skechers USA Canada Inc. March 2015, Federal Court of Appeal

Canada vs. Skechers USA Canada Inc. March 2015, Federal Court of Appeal

In this case the Federal Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the Canadian International Trade Tribunal in which the tribunal upheld seven decisions – one for each of the years 2005 through 2011 – of the Canada Border Services Agency under subsection 60(4) of Canada’s Customs Act. Skechers Canada, a subsidiary of Skechers USA, purchases footwear to sell in Canada from its parent at a price equal to the price paid by Skechers US to its manufacturers, the cost of shipping the foodware to the US and warehousing, and an arm’s length profit. Skechers Canada also makes payments to Skechers US pursuant to a cost sharing agreement to compensate the parent for activities associated with the development and maintenance of the Skechers brand and to the creation and sale of footwear. The Court ruled that CSA payments relating to research, design, and development (R&D) were “in respect of” the goods ... Continue to full case
Italy vs Alfa Gomma SUD s.r.l. July 2014, Supreme Court 16480

Italy vs Alfa Gomma SUD s.r.l. July 2014, Supreme Court 16480

This case was about tax deductibility of service costs charged to an Italien company by an European Cost Centre within the group. The Supreme Court stated that it is necessary to give evidence that the Italian company have actually received a service and that this service is objectively definable and documented. The Court ruled in favor of the tax administration. Click here for translation Italy Supreme-Court-18-July-2014-No.-16480.pdf Share: ... Continue to full case
US vs. Veritas Software Corporation, December 2009

US vs. Veritas Software Corporation, December 2009

The issue in the VERITAS case involved the calculation of the buy-in payment under VERITAS’ cost sharing arrangement with its Irish affiliate. VERITAS US assigned all of its existing European sales agreements to VERITAS Ireland. Similarly,VERITAS Ireland was given the rights to use the covered intangibles and to use VERITAS US’s trademarks, trade names and service marks in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and in Asia-Pacific and Japan. In return, VERITAS Ireland agreed to pay royalties to VERITAS US in exchange for the rights granted. The royalty payment included a prepayment amount (i.e. lump-sum payment) along with running royalties that were subject to revision to maintain an arm’s length rate. Thereafter, VERITAS Ireland began co-developing, manufacturing and selling VERITAS products in the Europe, the Middle East and Africa markets as well as in the Asia-Pacific and Japan markets. These improvements, along with the establishment of new ... Continue to full case
US vs Xilinx Inc, May 27, 2009, Court of Appeal

US vs Xilinx Inc, May 27, 2009, Court of Appeal

In a decision the IRS determined that Xilinx should have allocated stock option costs for foreign subsidiary research and development employees as part of its Section 482-7 cost-sharing agreement calculation. The United States Tax Court overruled the IRS, finding that in an arm’s-length situation, unrelated parties would not allocate employee stock option costs in the way determined by the IRS. The Court of Appeals later in 2009 overruled the opinion of the tax court, and found in favor of the IRS. US-vs-XILINX-INC-CIR06-74246 Share: ... Continue to full case
US vs. Xilinex Inc, August 2005

US vs. Xilinex Inc, August 2005

In a decision the IRS found that Xilinx should have allocated stock option costs for foreign subsidiary research and development employees as part of its Section 482-7 cost-sharing agreement calculation. In this decision, the United States Tax Court overruled the IRS, finding that in an arm’s-length situation, unrelated parties would not allocate employee stock option costs in the way determined by the IRS. The US Court of Appeals later in 2009 overturned the opinion of the tax court, and found in favor of the IRS. US-Xilinx_decision_08302005 Share: ... Continue to full case
US vs Seagate Technology, December 2000, United States Tax Court

US vs Seagate Technology, December 2000, United States Tax Court

The IRS ruled that Seagate should have included the cost of employee stock options in the net revenue calculation associated with its cost-sharing agreement with its foreign subsidiaries. Seagate appealed the ruling on the grounds that the IRS was not aware of actual arm’s length circumstances relating to the employee stock option compensation. In this case, the United States Tax Court found in favor of the IRS. US-Seagate_decision_12222000 Share: ... Continue to full case
US vs Seagate Tech, 1994, US Tax Court 102 T.C. 149

US vs Seagate Tech, 1994, US Tax Court 102 T.C. 149

In the Seagate Tech case the US Tax Court was asked to decide on several distinct transfer pricing issues arising out of a transfer pricing adjustments issued by the IRS. Whether respondent’s reallocations of gross income under section 482 for the years in issue are arbitrary, capricious, or unreasonable; whether respondent should bear the burden of proof for any of the issues involved in the instant case; whether petitioner Seagate Technology, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as Seagate Scotts Valley), paid Seagate Technology Singapore, Pte. Ltd. (Seagate Singapore), a wholly owned subsidiary of Seagate Scotts Valley, arm’s-length prices for component parts; whether Seagate Scotts Valley paid Seagate Singapore arm’s-length prices for completed disk drives; whether Seagate Singapore paid Seagate Scotts Valley arm’s-length royalties for the use of certain intangibles; whether the royalty fee Seagate Singapore paid Seagate Scotts Valley for disk drives covered under a section ... Continue to full case