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Alan Horowitz's practice focuses on appellate litigation, with particular experience in federal tax appeals. Although he practices primarily in the United States Supreme Court and federal courts of appeals, he also represents clients in litigation of legal issues in trial court. Mr. Horowitz has been described by clients quoted in Chambers as being "a go-to guy in appeals" who is "very good at taking complex tax issues and simplifying them."

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Horowitz worked in the Solicitor General's Office at the Department of Justice from 1979 to 1990, serving under four Solicitors General. During that time he argued 28 cases before the United States Supreme Court and briefed many others on a variety of topics, including constitutional, statutory, and criminal issues. From 1986 to 1990, he served as the Tax Assistant to the Solicitor General and had primary responsibility both for conducting the government’s tax litigation before the Supreme Court and for overseeing the government’s determinations to appeal adverse tax decisions. Mr. Horowitz briefed and argued some of the most significant Supreme Court tax cases of that period.

Since coming to Miller & Chevalier, Mr. Horowitz has continued his Supreme Court practice while also handling numerous cases in federal courts of appeals across the country. His achievements include three cases in which his client prevailed on appeal following an unfavorable trial court decision and then successfully opposed the United States government’s petition for Supreme Court review.

While at Columbia Law School, Mr. Horowitz served as Articles and Book Reviews Editor of the Columbia Law Review.


Representative Engagements

United States Supreme Court 

  • PPL v. Comm'r, 569 U.S. 329 (2013), rev'g, 665 F.3d 60 (3d Cir. 2011) (amicus brief addressing the foreign tax creditability of a United Kingdom tax).
  • Textron, Inc. v. United States, cert. denied, 09-750 (May 24, 2010) (amicus brief addressing the work product privilege for tax accrual workpapers). 
  • Federal Nat’l Mortgage Ass’n v. United States, cert. denied, 128 S. Ct. 1110 (2008) (certiorari petition on issues of sovereign immunity and interest payments on tax refunds). 
  • Rockwell Int'l Corp. v. United States, 549 U.S. 457 (2007) (amicus brief addressing the original source requirement of the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act). 
  • Empire Healthchoice Assurance, Inc. v. McVeigh, 547 U.S. 677 (2006) (successful petition for certiorari, and briefing and arguing on the merits on issues of federal vs. state court jurisdiction in connection with the Federal Employees Health Benefits Act). 
  • COSVI v. FAC, cert. denied, 127 S. Ct. 728 (2006) (certiorari petition on behalf of a major insurance company addressing a district court's jurisdiction to enforce a settlement). 
  • Illinois Tool Works, Inc. v. Independent Ink, Inc., 547 U.S. 28 (2006) (amicus brief addressing the presumption applicable to patents in antitrust litigation). 
  • Boeing Co. v. United States, 537 U.S. 437 (2003) (assisted in briefing on the merits of research and development tax credit issue). 
  • FATA Aluminum, Inc. v. Vulcan Engineering Co., cert. denied, 537 U.S. 814 (2002) (criteria for "obviousness" determination in patent litigation). 
  • Vermont Agency of Natural Resources v. United States ex rel. Stevens, 529 U.S. 765 (2000) (constitutionality of qui tam litigation) (amicus brief). 
  • Geier v. American Honda Motor Co., 529 U.S. 861 (1999) (implied and express preemption issues) (amicus brief). 
  • Commissioner v. Texaco Inc., cert. denied, 520 U.S. 1185 (1996) (amicus brief for Exxon Corporation in opposition to U.S. cert. petition on issue of reallocating income under 26 U.S.C. § 482). 
  • Hughes Aircraft Co. v. United States ex rel. Schumer, 520 U.S. 939 (1996) (amicus brief for Chamber of Commerce and others on issue of liability for non-financial frauds under the False Claims Act). 
  • Winstar v. United States, 518 U.S. 839 (1996) (ability to sue government for broken promise concerning accounting treatment of thrifts) (amicus brief). 
  • Melendez v. United States, 518 U.S. 120 (1996) (limitation on court's sentencing discretion) (amicus brief).
  • Planning Research Corp. v. United States ex rel. Schwedt, cert. denied, 516 U.S. 1068 (1996) (definition of "claim" under the False Claims Act) (amicus brief). 
  • Ashland Inc. v. Kentucky Revenue Cabinet, No. 94-1661, cert. denied, 515 U.S. 1103 (1995) (constitutionality of Kentucky's application of its use tax to leased property). 
  • Barclays Bank PLC v. Franchise Tax Board of California, 512 U.S. 298 (1993) (constitutionality of waters' edge taxation) (amicus brief). 
  • Boeing Co. v. United States ex rel. Kelly, cert. denied, 510 U.S. 1140 (1993) (constitutionality of qui tam provisions of False Claims Act) (amicus brief). 
  • Kraft General Foods v. Iowa Dept. of Rev., 505 U.S. 71 (1991) (amicus brief on behalf of IBM, Coca-Cola, DuPont, General Motors, Ford, Chevron, Mobil, NCR, and W.R. Grace addressing state taxation of foreign-source dividends).
  • Allied-Signal, Inc. v. Director, Div. of Taxation, 504 U.S. 768 (1992) (amicus brief on behalf of most of the above companies, plus Beatrice Company, International Paper, and Loew's, on the unitary business principle of state taxation). 
  • California Housing Securities v. United States, cert. denied, 506 U.S. 916 (1992) (takings claim). 
  • Madison Cablevision, Inc. v. City of Morganton, 503 U.S. 985 (1992) (assisting in brief in opposition defending a municipality's decision to deny a franchise to a cable TV operator).
  • Barnes v. E-Systems, Inc., cert. denied, 501 U.S. 1301 (1990) (representation of Shell Oil, US Sprint, Kimberly-Clark, Pillsbury, E-Systems, Greyhound Lines, and La Quinta Motor Inns in successfully opposing the State of Texas's petition for certiorari in a case raising an ERISA preemption issue; the clients had prevailed in the Fifth Circuit, but retained us after Justice Scalia granted a stay and expressed the view that the Court would likely grant certiorari and reverse). 
  • United States v. Energy Resources, Inc., 495 U.S. 545 (1990) (power of Chapter 11 debtor to designate payments so as to minimize responsible officers' withholding tax liability). 
  • United States v. Goodyear, 493 U.S. 132 (1989) (computation of foreign tax credit where certain losses are deductible under foreign, but not U.S. law). 
  • United States v. Zolin, 491 U.S. 554 (1989) (court's power to grant conditional enforcement of IRS summons; standard of proof of crime-fraud exception to attorney-client privilege claim). 
  • Commissioner v. Clark, 489 U.S. 726 (1989) (circumstances under which boot is taxed as a dividend in certain reorganizations). 
  • United States v. Stuart, 489 U.S. 353 (1989) (standard for issuing summons requested by foreign tax treaty partner).
  • U.S. Catholic Conference v. Abortion Rights Mobilization, Inc., 487 U.S. 72 (1988) (ability to litigate on appeal of contempt judgment the plaintiff's standing to bring underlying action). 
  • Commissioner v. Bollinger, 485 U.S. 340 (1988) (whether dummy corporation set up to avoid state usury laws must be recognized as separate taxable entity). 
  • Arkansas Best Corp. v. Commissioner, 485 U.S. 212 (1988) (validity of Corn Products doctrine -- whether stock acquired for business purpose can be treated as capital asset). 
  • Commissioner v. Fink, 483 U.S. 89 (1987) (whether surrender of a small portion of a dominant shareholder's shares gives rise to an immediately deductible loss). 
  • United States v. General Dynamics Corp., 481 U.S. 239 (1987) ("all events test" as applied to estimation of future employee health benefit claims against self-insurer). 
  • Jersey Shore State Bank v. United States, 479 U.S. 442 (1987) (existence of notice requirement for Section 3505 third-party lender liability for unpaid withholding taxes). 
  • Dow Chemical Co. v. United States, 476 U.S. 227 (1986) (Fourth Amendment challenge to EPA overflights of industrial facility). 
  • United States v. Von Neumann, 474 U.S. 242 (1986) (Fifth Amendment challenge to rescission procedure in civil forfeiture of smuggled goods). 
  • Johnson v. City of Baltimore, 472 U.S. 353 (1985) (compliance of Baltimore mandatory retirement plan for firefighters with ADEA). 
  • INS v. Rios-Pineda, 471 U.S. 444 (1985) (standard for reopening deportation proceedings). 
  • First Nat'l Bank of Atlanta v. Bartow Cty. Board of Tax Assessors, 470 U.S. 583 (1985) (legality of Georgia bank shares tax, which takes into account federal obligations held by bank) (argued for the United States as amicus). 
  • United States v. Johns, 469 U.S. 478 (1985) (Fourth Amendment -- delayed warrantless search of vehicle). 
  • Wasman v. United States, 468 U.S. 559 (1984) (due process challenge to resentencing at second trial to higher sentence based on intervening conviction). 
  • Clark v. Community for Creative Non-Violence, 468 U.S. 288 (1984) (First Amendment challenge to prohibition against demonstrators sleeping in Lafayette Park). 
  • Oliver v. United States, 466 U.S. 170 (1984) (whether Fourth Amendment protections apply in "open fields" of private property). 
  • Donovan v. Lone Steer, Inc., 464 U.S. 408 (1984) (constitutionality of agency subpoena for company records).
  • United States v. Place, 462 U.S. 696 (1983) (Fourth Amendment -- legality of detention of airline passenger's luggage on suspicion that it contains narcotics). 
  • Morrison-Knudsen Constr. Co. v. Director, Office of Workers' Compensation, 461 U.S. 624 (1983) (Longshoreman's Act -- whether employer contributions to union trust funds are "wages" under LHWCA). 
  • United States v. Security Industrial Bank, 459 U.S. 70 (1982) (Fifth Amendment claim that retroactive application of Section 522(f) of Bankruptcy Code [destroying the value of certain blanket security interests in household goods] is a taking).
  • Northern Pipeline Constr. Co. v. Marathon Pipe Line Co., 458 U.S. 50 (1982) (constitutionality of Article I bankruptcy courts established by the Bankruptcy Act of 1978).
  • United States v. MacDonald, 456 U.S. 1 (1982) (whether delay between dismissal of murder charges against a Green Beret and his subsequent indictment violated Speedy Trial Clause). 
  • United States v. Clark, 454 U.S. 555 (1982) (interpretation of civil service pay statute). 
  • Middlesex Cty. Sewerage Authority v. Nat'l Sea Clammers Ass'n, 453 U.S. 1 (1981) (existence of various remedies for water pollution, such as private right of action under Clean Water Act or federal common law action for nuisance).
  • Monroe v. Standard Oil Co., 452 U.S. 549 (1981) (extent to which employer must accommodate reservist's obligation to attend weekend military duty). 
  • Fedorenko v. United States, 449 U.S. 490 (1981) (whether there was a "material misrepresentation" that justified denaturalization of a Nazi war criminal). 
  • Thomas v. Washington Gas Light Co., 448 U.S. 261 (1980) (application of Full Faith and Credit Clause where different states make successive workers' compensation awards). 
  • Coffy v. Republic Steel Corp., 447 U.S. 191 (1980) (whether supplemental unemployment benefits are a "perquisite of seniority" that must be credited to veterans for their military service).

Court of Appeals 

  • Washington Mutual, Inc., et al. v. United States, 130 Fed Cl. 653 (2017), aff'd No. 2017-1944 (Fed. Cir. June 4, 2018) (allocation of cost basis in intangible assets).
  • Hewlett-Packard Co. v. Commissioner, 875 F.3d 494 (9th Cir. 2017) (debt equity recharacterization of financing transaction involving foreign tax credits).
  • Family Fed'n for World Peace & Unification Int'l v. Moon, 129 A.3d 234 (D.C. 2015) (successfully appealing dismissal of case on ecclesiastical abstention grounds and obtaining remand for trial).
  • Howard Hughes Properties v. Commissioner, 805 F.3d 175 (5th Cir. 2015) (availability of completed contract method of accounting).
  • Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Commissioner, 689 F.3d 191 (2d Cir. 2012) (upholding the taxpayer's claim for interest netting notwithstanding directly contrary precedent in the Federal Circuit).
  • DeNaples v. Commissioner, 674 F.3d 172 (3d Cir. 2012) (upholding the taxpayer's claim that certain interest income was tax exempt under Code section 103).
  • Washington Mutual Inc. v. United States, 636 F.3d 1207 (9th Cir. 2011) (successfully appealed decision denying basis to intangible assets received in a supervisory merger). 
  • COSVI v. FAC, 563 F.3d 1 (1st Cir. 2009) (reversing sanctions award imposed against our client).
  • Brubaker v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 482 F.3d 586 (DC Cir. 2007) (successfully defended a district court decision that rejected a former employee's attempt to obtain benefits that MetLife intended to grant only to MetLife retirees). 
  • Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Commissioner, 484 F.3d 731 (5th Cir. 2007) (calculation of interest due on tax refunds). 
  • Centex v. United States, 486 F.3d 1369 (Fed. Cir. 2007) (claim for attorneys' fees based on bad faith conduct).
  • Fed. Nat'l Mortgage Ass'n v. United States, 463 F.3d 968 (Fed. Cir. 2006), cert. denied, 128 S. Ct. 1110 (2008) (applicability of statute of limitations). 
  • Long-Term Capital v. United States, 150 Fed. Appx. 40 (2d Cir. Sept. 27, 2005) (imposition of penalties for alleged tax shelter). 
  • Capital Blue Cross v. Commissioner, 431 F.3d 117 (3d Cir. 2005) (tax consequences of termination of health insurance contracts) (amicus brief). 
  • First Heights Bank, FSB v. United States, 422 F.3d 1311 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (breach of contract damages awarded because federal legislation interfered with promises made in connection with purchase of failed thrifts). 
  • Federal Nat'l Mortgage Ass'n v. United States, 379 F.3d 1303 (Fed. Cir. 2004) (availability of interest netting remedy in light of sovereign immunity). 
  • General Electric Co. v. United States, 384 F.3d 1307 (Fed. Cir. 2004) (calculation of interest due on tax refunds).
  • Fla. Power & Light Co. v. United States, 375 F.3d 1119 (Fed. Cir. 2004) (federal highway excise tax issue). 
  • Clajon Gas Co. v. Commissioner, 354 F.3d 786 (8th Cir. 2004) (determination of depreciation class life) (amicus brief).
  • Robinson v. United States, 335 F.3d 1365 (Fed. Cir. 2003), cert. denied, 540 U.S. 1105 (2004) (reversing unfavorable decision on important executive compensation issue involving section 83 and then successfully opposing the government's petition for certiorari).
  • Cain v. United States, 350 F.3d 1304 (Fed. Cir. 2003) (liability of United States to investors in failed savings and loan).
  • Saginaw Bay Pipeline Co. v. United States, 338 F.3d 600 (6th Cir. 2003) (determination of depreciation class life) (amicus brief). 
  • Allegheny Teledyne Inc. v. United States, 316 F.3d 1336 (Fed. Cir. 2003) (pension cost obligation of government contractor in the event of segment closing). 
  • Dee-K Enterprises, Inc. v. Heveafil Sdn. Bhd., 299 F.3d 281 (4th Cir. 2002) (standard for proving Sherman Antitrust Act liability for mixed U.S.-foreign cartel), cert. denied, 539 U.S. 969 (2003).
  • Chevron USA, Inc. v. Mobil Producing Texas and New Mexico, 281 F.3d 1249 (Fed. Cir. 2002) (assisting in a case involving the effect of a DOE consent order on a claim for contribution). 
  • Hughes Communications Galaxy, Inc. v. United States, 271 F.3d 1060 (Fed. Cir. 2001) (damages for government breach of contract to launch satellites). 
  • Host Marriott Corp. v. United States, 267 F.3d 363 (4th Cir. 2001) (eligibility of interest for special 10-year carryback rule).
  • Exxon Corp. v. United States, 244 F.3d 1341 (Fed. Cir. 2001) (application of fixed-contract exception to repeal of gas depletion allowance). 
  • Porter v. Ogden, Newell & Welch, 241 F.3d 1334 (11th Cir. 2001) (reversing dismissal of malpractice claim as premature).
  • Lockheed Martin Corp. v. United States, 210 F.3d 1366 (Fed. Cir. 2000) (research tax credit for fixed-price contractors) (amicus brief). 
  • AUSA Life Ins. Co. v. Ernst & Young, 206 F.3d 202 (2d Cir. 2000) (standard for loss causation in securities suit by institutional investors) (amicus brief). 
  • Amoco Corp. v. Commissioner, 138 F.3d 1139 (7th Cir. 1998) (foreign tax credit). 
  • Kaiser Aero. & Elecs. Corp. v. Alliant Techsystems, Inc., No. 96-2117, 1997 U.S. App. LEXIS 35509 (4th Cir. Dec. 17, 1997) (scope of government subcontract). 
  • Exxon Corp. v. United States, 88 F.3d 968 (Fed. Cir. 1996), cert. denied, 520 U.S. 1119 (1997) (representation persuading the Federal Circuit to reverse the government's victory in a corporate tax case involving natural gas depletion and then successfully opposing the government's petition for certiorari). 
  • Weyerhaeuser Co. v. United States, 92 F.3d 1148 (Fed. Cir. 1996), cert. denied, 519 U.S. 1091 (1997) (representation persuading the Federal Circuit to reverse the government's victory in a corporate tax case involving casualty loss deductions and then successfully opposing the government's petition for certiorari). 
  • Ford Motor Co. v. Commissioner, 71 F.3d 209 (6th Cir. 1995) (current deductibility of structured tort settlement liability).
  • Fairchild Industries v. United States, 71 F.3d 868 (Fed. Cir. 1995) (amicus brief successfully arguing that government contractors are entitled to a tax credit for research expenditures incurred in connection with a fixed-price contract).
  • MCI Telecommunications Corp. v. FCC, 59 F.3d 1407 (DC Cir. 1995) (challenge to FCC authority to impose certain offsets). 
  • Bell Atlantic Tel. Cos. v. FCC, 24 F.3d 1441 (DC Cir. 1994) (invalidating FCC order as effecting an unlawful taking of property). 
  • New Eng. Tel. & Tel. Co. v. FCC, 1994 U.S. App. LEXIS 19425 (DC Cir. May 4, 1994) (order lifting stay pending review).
  • In re DOE Stripper Well Exemption Litigation, 945 F.2d 1575 (TECA 1991) (federal courts lacked jurisdiction to enjoin Alaska from taxing certain benefits received by oil companies from a settlement).
Government Experience
  • Assistant to the Solicitor General, U.S. Department of Justice, 1979 - 1986
  • Tax Assistant to the Solicitor General, U.S. Department of Justice, 1986 - 1990
Rankings and Recognition
  • Chambers USA: Tax Controversy (Nationwide), 2007 - 2023
  • Chambers USA: Tax (District of Columbia), 2017 - 2023
  • The Best Lawyers in America®: Litigation and Controversy - Tax, 2013 - 2023
  • Legal 500: Tax: U.S. Taxes: Contentious, 2021, 2023
  • Washington, DC Super Lawyers®: Appellate, 2020, 2023
  • International Tax Review: Tax Controversy, 2015, 2017, 2023 - 2024
  • Legal 500: Tax: Tax Controversy, 2008, 2010 - 2011
  • DC Bar Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll, 2013, 2015, 2017 - 2019
State Admissions
  • District of Columbia
Court Admissions
  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • United States Court of Federal Claims
  • United States Tax Court
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