Tax Articles

Current Developments on Prior Written Supervisory Approval under IRC § 6751(b)(1)

The Statute No penalty under the Code[1] may be assessed unless the initial determination of such assessment is personally approved in writing by the immediate supervisor of the individual/agent making such determination (or another appropriate higher-level official).[2] This approval requirement, introduced in 1998, was the subject of only three substantial decisions prior to 2020. This year, however, was a boon for taxpayers, and the full opinions of the Tax Court defined the metes and bounds

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Tax Articles

A Comprehensive Guide to Preparer Penalties

Preparer penalties are like poison ivy. They lurk around every corner, and despite your best efforts, even the slightest step off the path of (tax return) righteousness can lead to a wholly uncomfortable time.  This article provides a comprehensive, step-by-step analysis of each of the preparer penalties under the Code, both civil and, yes, even criminal and examines, where possible, how to avoid them (after the fact – sort of like an administrative calamine lotion).

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Tax Articles

A Deep Dive into Innocent Spouse Relief

Uncle Bill has four children…that he knows of. We met Jedediah in a previous post. Jethro is on year four of his five-year stint at Raiford for possession of amphetamines with intent to distribute. In his defense, Jethro agreed with the officer that the crank was his.  However, he vehemently denied that he had any intent whatsoever to share it with anyone else. (Candidly, you absolutely believe him.)  Bill and Ethel’s daughters Jennie and Jaime

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Tax Articles

Filing Joint Returns Under IRC § 6013 – Consequences and Benefits

IRC § 6013 permits the filing of joint returns by spouses. It should be noted that the Code has not adapted to the times, and it still lists “husbands and wives” as the only persons who may make a single return jointly. For purposes of equality and inclusion, and to stick it to the patriarchy, I will use the term spouses. The most interesting aspect of IRC § 6013 is the ability for a delinquent

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Tax Articles

The Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures

In an increasingly common occurrence, a client calls in somewhat of a tizzy over foreign information returns, which, apparently, she was “required” to file for the past few years. She’s gone to three different CPAs, only the last one of which even asked her whether she had foreign assets or interests. Her new CPA, one of the good ones, inquired about any foreign relationships that she might have, and she disclosed a Swiss bank account,

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Tax Articles

Abatements, Reconsiderations, and Adjustments

There are three types of administrative remedies that a taxpayer may avail itself of in the event that the taxpayer believes that a tax, penalty, or interest has been improperly assessed.  Reconsiderations deal with original determinations made during an audit/examination, and generally apply when the taxpayer has additional information that was not taken into account during the original examination. Reconsiderations are requests to reevaluate the results of an audit assessment when a taxpayer disagrees with

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Tax Articles

Successor Liability in a Purchase of Corporate Assets

As a tax controversy lawyer, most of your clients come to you in quite a predicament with the IRS, rather than coming to you to avoid said predicament. Such is the case when Cousin Elmer comes to visit you one dismal winter day. You may remember Elmer from our article on FBARs, but if not, Cousin Elmer has seven and a half fingers from trying, rather unsuccessfully, to eradicate his attic’s squirrel population through the

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The Truth about Amending Tax Returns

Clients are untrustworthy.  As a tax controversy attorney, this is my experience. I have heard that other types of law deals with more honorable sorts, but I’ll believe it when I see it.  When a client comes to you and says “whoopsie, I forgot to report [insert absurdly large number

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Mathews v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-85)

On July 8, 2021, the Tax Court issued a Memorandum Opinion in the case of Mathews v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-85). The primary issue presented in Mathews was whether the Tax Court had jurisdiction to hear a petitioner when the pro se petitioner filed his petition (sent a letter to

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Delgado v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-84)

On July 7, 2021, the Tax Court issued a Memorandum Opinion in the case of Delgado v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-84). The primary issue presented in Delgado was whether the petitioner’s frivolous argument that he did not receive taxable income in 2017 because he was not engaged in a “trade

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Peterfreund v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-83)

On July 7, 2021, the Tax Court issued a Memorandum Opinion in the case of Peterfreund v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-83). The primary issue presented in Peterfreund was whether the IRS’s Whistleblower Office (WBO) abused its discretion because it did not initiate an administrative or judicial action and it did

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Pragias v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-82)

On June 30, 2021, the Tax Court issued a Memorandum Opinion in the case of Pragias v. Commissioner (T.C. Memo. 2021-82). The primary issue presented in Pragias was whether the six-year statute of limitations under IRC § 6501(e) (substantial omission of items) applied. The Substantial Omission Extension under IRC §

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