Carl E. Hartley

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1800 Republic Centre
633 Chestnut Street
Chattanooga, Tennessee 37450
T: 423.756.2010
F: 423.752.9542

Carl E. Hartley concentrates his practice in state and local taxation and federal taxation, as well as represents clients in corporate law and real estate law matters. He was head of Baker Donelson's Tax Department for ten years culminating in March 2013.

Mr. Hartley's state and local tax practice includes representing clients in a wide variety of tax controversies, both administratively and in court, opposing the Tennessee Department of Revenue as well as local counties and cities in this State. Such controversies have focused upon the Tennessee excise and franchise taxes, sales and use taxes, real and personal (both tangible and intangible) property taxes, liquor-by-the-drink taxes, hotel-motel taxes, mineral severance taxes, real estate transfer taxes, private chapter taxes, among others. Mr. Hartley also represents clients opposing insurance related taxes before the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance.

Mr. Hartley's state and local tax representation of clients includes not only controversies arising from audits and litigation, but also advice involving successor liability circumstances, penalty waiver requests, offers in compromise, applications for tax exemptions, benefits and incentives, and voluntary disclosure agreements. He regularly assists clients in Tennessee and several other states, including Georgia, in connection with state and local tax planning considerations, such as choice and formation of business entities and tax planning regarding various business opportunities and transactions; as well as advice as to nexus inquiries and many other multistate circumstances and planning considerations.

Mr. Hartley is also regularly involved in assisting clients in efforts to enact or oppose tax related legislation in the Tennessee Legislature. He testifies before various legislative committees and works closely with the Firm's Tennessee Public Policy Group to assist clients in their legislative endeavors. He has significant experience in drafting and, where necessary, opposing proposed tax laws and regulations during the legislative enactment or the administrative promulgation process.

Mr. Hartley also represents clients in a wide range of matters before the Tennessee Department of Economic & Community Development, including negotiations with that Department for purposes of seeking various types of financial assistance related to anticipated new or expanded locations within this State. He also assists clients with respect to completing and filing with that Department the appropriate applications and supporting data in order to receive training and/or infrastructure assistance from or through said Department.

Mr. Hartley's federal tax practice includes choice and formation of business entities; capital formation; acquisitions and divestitures; mergers, reorganizations and restructuring of business entities; business tax planning; and tax considerations in regard to real estate and other tax audits, both during the IRS audit process as well as at the IRS appeals office; and represents clients in those administrative efforts seeking refund of taxes or abatement of penalties and interest. He has also represented clients before the U.S. Tax Court in contesting federal tax liabilities.

Representative Cases

  • High Country Adventures, Inc., et al v. Polk County, Tennessee, WL 4853105 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2008), application for permission to appeal denied by Tenn. Sup. Ct. May 4, 2009.
  • Eastman Chemical Co. v. Johnson, Tennessee Commissioner of Revenue, 151 S.W.3d 503 (Tenn. Sup. Ct. 2004), representing amicus curiae, Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry
  • Combustion Engineering, Inc. v. Jackson, Tennessee Commissioner of Revenue, 705 S.W.2d 655 (Tenn. Sup. Ct. 1986)
  • Robertson & Associates (Alabama), Inc. v. Boswell, Alabama Commissioner of Revenue, 361 So.2d 1070 (Ala. Sup. Ct., 1978)

Legislative Testimony

Presentations and/or testimony before committees of the Tennessee Legislature regarding various tax issues, including:

  • Testimony regarding numerous sales and use tax issues involving various industries.
  • Testimony regarding procedures for contesting taxes administered and collected by the Tennessee Department of Revenue.
  • Testimony regarding various property (real, tangible and intangible) tax issues.

Publications & Speaking Engagements

Lectures to various organizations regarding state and local substantive and procedural tax issues and updates, including presentations to or courses for:

  • "Spotlight on Tennessee: 2014 Tax and Related Legislation," Baker Donelson Tax Alert (August 11, 2014) 
  • "Spotlight on Tennessee: Letter Ruling Addresses Treatment of a Section 338(h)(10) Election," Baker Donelson Tax Alert (July 10, 2014)
  • "Spotlight on Tennessee: Department of Revenue Addresses Manufacturer's Sourcing of Drop Shipment Receipts," Baker Donelson Tax Alert (February 18, 2014)
  • Chattanooga Tax Practitioners, "Update of Tennessee Taxes" (1984 – 2003)
  • Chattanooga Area Chapter, Institute of Internal Auditors, "Overview of Tennessee Use Tax" (1998)
  • Chattanooga Chapter of Tennessee Society of Certified Public Accountants, "Recent Developments in Tennessee Taxation" (1997)
  • Tennessee Society of Certified Public Accountants, "Current Developments in Tennessee Taxation" (1995)
  • Chattanooga Accountants Associations "Tennessee Sales and Use Tax Overview" (1987)
  • Chattanooga Chapter of Tennessee Society of Certified Public Accountants, "Tennessee Sales and Use Tax -- Overview and Recent Developments" (1984)
  • East Tennessee Chapter, Institute of Internal Auditors, "Update of Tennessee Taxes" (1983)
  • National Association of Accountants, North Georgia Chapter, "Georgia Income and Sales Taxes" (1982)
  • National Business Institute, various Tennessee cities, "Tennessee Sales and Use Tax"
  • AICPA course on "Minimizing the Corporate Interstate Tax Burden" (1978)
  • Past contributing author for a state tax review article regularly published in the Tennessee CPA Journal (1991 – 1993)

Professional Honors & Activities

  • Department Chair, Baker Donelson's Tax Department (2003 to 2013)
  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell (1991 to date)
  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® in Tax Law (since 2005), Corporate Law (since 2008), Non-Profit/Charities Law (2011), Tax Litigation & Controversy (since 2012) 
  • Named the Best Lawyers' 2015 Chattanooga Tax Law "Lawyer of the Year"
  • Listed in Mid-South Super Lawyers in Tax Law (since 2007)
  • Chairman, Tax Section, Tennessee Bar Association (1981 – 1982)
  • Chairman, Tax Committee and Director (1986 – 2002, 2009 – 2010, 2012, 2013) and Executive Committee Member (2009 – 2010, 2012, 2013), Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry
  • Chairman, Tax Committee, Chattanooga Manufacturers Association (2004 to date)
  • Special Committee on State Taxation, Tennessee Bar Association (1999)
  • Tennessee Bar Foundation (1994 to date)
  • Chattanooga Bar Foundation (2011) 
  • Tennessee Federal Tax Institute, Past Trustee (1981)
  • Regional Liaison Committee, Internal Revenue Service (1980 – 1982)
  • Member – Tennessee Bar Association; State Bar of Georgia; American Bar Association
  • Chattanooga Golf & Country Club – President (1993); Member of Capital Funds Committee (1998 to date)
  • Chair, Baker Donelson's Audit Letter Response Committee
  • Member – Baker Donelson's Conflicts Committee
  • Member – First Centenary United Methodist Church
  • Chair, Constitution and Bylaws Committee, Rotary Chattanooga (2007 – 2010)

Admissions

  • Tennessee, 1973
  • Georgia, 1979
  • U.S. Tax Court, 1976
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Tennessee, 1974
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 1987
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1984

Education

  • University of Tennessee College of Law, J.D., 1973
  • University of Tennessee, B.S., 1970