Richard Feigen lost his bid to get a tax refund on the Max Ernst painting he sold in 2004 but later, long after the statutory time limit, found out was a fake and refunded the money he received from the buyer (and was refunded in turn by the dealer who sold it to him.) But he says he’ll keep appealing:
While not responsible in any way for the fake Max Ernst painting sold under the name “La Forêt,” dealer Richard Feigen was deemed ineligible for a $215,625 sales tax refund because he filed too late to qualify under state Tax Law §1139(c), Division of Taxation ALJ Winifred Maloney decided.
“It is unfortunate that it took so long for the painting to be determined to be inauthentic, but that is a risk petitioner assumes every time it makes a sale,” Maloney wrote in Matter of Richard L. Feigen & Company, 824996. […]
Feigen sold what he believed to be a piece that surrealist Ernst had painted to Anna-Marie Kellen in January 2004 for $2.5 million. About four months earlier, Feigen had bought the painting from a Paris art gallery, the Galerie Daniel Malingue, for $2.325 million.
In February 2015, the Feigen dealership paid the sales tax to the Department of Taxation and Finance on returns it filed for the period Jan. 1, 2004, through Jan. 31, 2004.
Maloney decided that Tax Law §1139(c) was clear in providing a three-year window after filing sales tax returns to make a refund claim, or two years from when the tax was paid.
Art Dealer Denied Tax Refund for Forged Painting (New York Law Journal)