Kushner likely paid nearly no federal income taxes for years

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How Jared Kushner likely avoided paying taxes on his income for about seven years is a lesson in the business of real estate.

Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of President Donald Trump and a senior White House adviser, paid little to no federal income tax from 2009 to 2016, The New York Times reports.

The Times did not see Kushner's tax returns themselves, according to the report.

Documents released by the White House in June showed Kushner held assets worth at least $181 million, the Associated Press reported.

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A panel of 13 attorneys and tax accountants reviewed the documents and concluded that Kushner paid "little or no" federal income taxes in five of the eight years - and only slightly more in the other three. Kushner did not break the law, however, when he marked his losses through depreciation, a tax benefit that allowed his company to deduct a portion of the cost of its buildings from its taxable income each year.

The strategies of calculating depreciation are seldom audited, which allows wide variance and gives real estate investors the opportunity to determine the size of their deductions without much oversight. The Times wrote that "nothing in the documents suggests Mr. Kushner or his company broke the law". The newspaper's independent review of the documents did not reveal any wrongdoing on the part of Kushner.

Peter Mirijanian, a spokesman for Mr. Kushner's lawyer, Abbe Lowell, said he would not respond to assumptions derived from documents that provide an incomplete picture and were "obtained in violation of the law and standard business confidentiality agreements".

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