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Rebuttable Presumption - Intermediate Sanctions

If an organization meets the following three requirements, payments it makes to a disqualified person under a compensation arrangement are presumed to be reasonable, and a transfer of property or the right to use property is presumed to be at fair market value.  The three requirements for establishing the rebuttable presumption are:

  1. The compensation arrangement must be approved in advance by an authorized body of the applicable tax-exempt organization, which is composed of individuals who do not have a conflict of interest concerning the transaction,
  2. Prior to making its determination, the authorized body obtained and relied upon appropriate data as to comparability, and
  3. The authorized body adequately and timely documented the basis for its determination concurrently with making that determination.

The documentation of the authorized body should include the terms of the transaction and the date of its approval, the members of the authorized body present during the debate and vote on the transaction, the comparability data obtained and relied upon, the actions of any members of the authorized body having a conflict of interest, and documentation of the basis for the determination.

The Internal Revenue Service may refute the presumption of reasonableness only if it develops sufficient contrary evidence to rebut the probative value of the comparability data relied upon by the authorized body.

If an organization does not satisfy the requirements of the rebuttable presumption, a facts and circumstances approach will be followed.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 11-Apr-2014