Patenting methods of filing taxes means that you might come up with a neat, legal tax shelter. But a few years later, someone with a patent on creating that tax shelter sues you for all your money gains. Or they might even sue to force you to stop using your tax shelter.
Some overly simple examples illustrate how silly this can be:
- Shortly after the income tax system becomes law, somebody patents the idea of declaring dependants for a deduction. Now the US law INTENDED to give everyone this benefit, but instead it would be controlled at the whim of the patent holder.
- Someone with a patent on saving taxes by setting up a 401-K forces you to break your 401-k and withdraw your money. They don't care if that will increase your tax liability. They just don't feel like licensing the right to use a 401-k, to you.
Hey, Rich People: Go stop those "business method" patents!