Taxation – Federal Estate Tax – Deductibility of Contingent Bequests to Charity

Testator bequeathed a remainder interest to charitable organizations which was contingent upon her sister, age eighty-two, predeceasing two other women, ages sixty-seven and sixty-eight. The Commissioner disallowed a deduction for this bequest on the ground that it was not certain that charity would receive any benefit. In the district court the parties stipulated that there was an eleven to one chance that charity would receive the bequest. On the basis of this stipulation the district court found for the taxpayer. On appeal, held, reversed. In order for a deduction to be allowed the possibility that charity will not take must be “so remote as to be negligible,” and a one in eleven chance does not qualify as “negligible.” United States v. Dean, (1st Cir. 1955) 224 F. (2d) 26.