Making Business Aircraft Ownership Less Taxing?

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From Doldrums To Depreciation...

Buying and owning an aircraft is anything but an inexpensive proposition, even if its use is strictly for business and therefore, totally deductible. But the benefits from aircraft ownership accruing to a company as a result of its employees' increased productivity, privacy and security -- especially in recent years, as airline services to business travelers decline -- has resulted in a recent resurgence in sales of new and used business aircraft of all shapes and sizes. For many of the same reasons, fractional aircraft ownership was invented and now thrives. As one result, the position in which the business and charter aviation industry finds itself today is in sharp contrast to the late 1980s and early 1990s, when "doldrums" barely described its condition. What has changed since then? Well, in addition to the product liability reforms called for in the General Aviation Revitalization Act of 1996, more favorable tax laws have gradually made it onto the books since 1986, when a number of "reforms" began to slowly erode the advantages of owning and operating an aircraft. Among them was elimination of the investment tax credit. Most recently and in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the federal government enacted tax laws designed to spur investment and to jump-start an economy reeling from uncertainty, among other ills.