Law firm can't deduct wedding costs as a business expense, Quebec court finds
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MONTREAL -- A Quebec judge has ruled against a law firm that tried to deduct the cost of a lavish wedding for the daughter of one of its lawyers as a business expense.
Judge Daniel Bourgeois of Quebec court ruled that the firm Spiegel Sohmer could not write off the $75,000 it reimbursed to lawyer Robert Raich and that Raich needs to pay taxes on the amount as a benefit.
The decision rendered last month states that Raich had argued that he'd thrown the sumptuous Montreal wedding party for his daughter Jacqueline in part to strengthen ties with the firm's clients.
He said that 97 of the 218 guests were his clients or business associates, and therefore the firm reimbursed him nearly half of the cost of the $169,000 wedding and claimed the amount on its 2012 tax filing.
Revenue Quebec took issue with the deduction and refused it on the basis that a wedding is clearly personal in nature.
Bourgeois agreed, noting that Raich failed to provide convincing evidence to prove otherwise and that nobody from the firm testified at the trial.
- This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 18, 2021