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BURNET v. WHITEHOUSE

decided: April 13, 1931.

BURNET, COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE
v.
WHITEHOUSE



CERTIORARI TO THE CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FIRST CIRCUIT.

Hughes, Holmes, Van Devanter, McReynolds, Brandeis, Sutherland, Butler, Stone, Roberts

Author: Mcreynolds

[ 283 U.S. Page 149]

 MR. JUSTICE McREYNOLDS delivered the opinion of the Court.

The Revenue Act of 1921, c. 136, 42 Stat. 227, 233, 237, 246, provides --

"Sec. 210. That . . . there shall be levied, collected, and paid for each taxable year upon the net income of every individual a normal tax of 8 per centum of the amount of the net income.

"Sec. 211. That . . . in addition to the normal tax imposed by section 210 of this Act, there shall be levied, collected, and paid for each taxable year upon the net income of every individual . . . a surtax . . .

"Sec. 212. (a) That in the case of an individual the term 'net income' means the gross income as defined in section 213, less the deductions allowed by section 214. . . .

"Sec. 213. That for the purposes of this title . . . the term 'gross income' -- (a) Includes gains, profits, and income derived . . . (b) Does not include the following items, which shall be exempt from taxation under this title: . . . (3) The value of property acquired by gift, bequest, devise, or descent (but the income from such property shall be included in gross income); . . ."

James Gordon Bennett died May 24, 1918. His will provided for payment of twenty or more annuities. Among other items, it contained the following:

Item "Tenth. I also give and bequeath to the said Sybil Douglas, wife of William Whitehouse, an annuity of five thousand dollars."

Item "Twenty-eight. . . . All annuities hereby given shall commence at the time of my death and be payable

[ 283 U.S. Page 150]

     in equal parts half-yearly, except as hereinabove ...


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