Attorney-at-Law

BLESS THE ROUNDERS

In Uncategorized on 08/08/2014 at 16:38

It’s summertime, sure enough, but George and Ira to the contrary non obstante, as my out-in-the-Hamptons colleagues say, the livin’ ain’t easy for Tax Court bloggers on a Friday afternoon.

Opinions don’t show up on Fridays at any time of the year, as the crew at 400 Second Street, NW, seem to treat this day as the Day of Preparation, as that phrase was used in a much more exalted circumstance, long ago and far away.

So, lest my cherished readers, few in number but independent of spirit, jump ship if they find nothing but yesterday’s blogpost on my site today, I am doing the blogger’s equivalent of ducking for apples among the orders, all seven pages’ worth (at 25 orders per page). And a toilsome business it is.

But that Obliging Judge, Judge David Gustafson, lays a designated hitter on us. There are actually two orders, but they’re a coupled entry; metaphors from the racetrack and the diamond follow, to suit the season.

And the King of Cutesy has thirty (count ‘em, thirty) of his inimitably-styled petrofiddles, each laying the same motion on poor Ch J Michael B (“Iron Mike”) Thornton, with motions from IRS blowing off each one. Ch J Iron Mike fouls these back on the screen, telling each petrofiddler to answer IRS, and vice versa, with everything due on Friday, August 22.

Wanna bet ten new pence Ch J Iron Mike isn’t going to be standing at the front door of 400 Second Street, NW, at 5 p.m., in two weeks, eagerly awaiting delivery of the foregoing? Thought not.

But before I get to Obliging Judge Gustafson, let’s look at with what John J. Petito, wholesale tax matterer, has gifted Ch J Iron Mike. It’s a “Motion For Court Order To State That Petitioners Win, As Per Stare Decisis, With Prejudice.”

Haven’t seen the papers, so can’t tell what John J. is up to, but if you remember, John J. reached base on a single in Jimastowlo Oil, LLC, et al., John J. Petito, Tax Matters Partner, 2013 T. C. Memo. 195, filed 8/26/13, when IRS lost the source partner in the sun. See my blogpost “Honor Your Partner”, 8/26/13.

Howbeit, John J. is as cutesy as ever (see my blogpost “Save the Cutesy”, 7/1/14) with such entities as Tochlim Kepabroil Conglomerate LLC , Redwaterpet Oil & Gas Royal Oil Family Delectation, LLC, and Strikeoil, LLC, to name but a few.

Can’t wait for the opinions, all thirty of them.

Now for that Judge Gustafson designated hitter. It’s that up-and-coming bug rounder Janice Marie Cross, Docket No. 1439-13, filed 8/8/14. It’s what we call around the track “POE” (part of entry) as there are two cases, consolidated.

I call Janice Marie a “bug”, not as a derogatory term, but because around the track an apprentice jockey is known as a “bug”, colloquial for the asterisk that appears next his or her name in racing programs and formbooks to designate apprentice status. But Janice Marie is really moving up in class on the rounder circuit.

Janice Marie sends Judge Gustafson a nine-page billet doux (“Open letter”) with a tale of woe about how she can’t pay IRS, and, separately, a “”Petition for Default Judgment and Dismissal***.” Order, at p. 1.

Judge Gustafson, ever obliging, gives Janice Marie the short course in Tax Court law and practice.

“Ms. Cross’s letter will be returned unfiled, since it is not a proper submission. Requests for relief are to be presented by a motion, not by letter. (And Ms. Cross is advised that a motion should not be titled ‘Petition’. In this Court, a ‘petition’ is the document that commences a lawsuit. A subsequent request for relief is put in a ‘motion’.) The letter reflects one of Ms. Cross’s misunderstandings about this suit: Contrary to her apparent impressions, in these cases brought under section 6213(a), the Court will make no decision about the IRS’s collection of her tax liability but will instead determine the amount of that liability. In the current lawsuit, her financial circumstance is therefore irrelevant. After these cases are decided, if Ms. Cross has unpaid liabilities, then the IRS may commence collection by levy (such as garnishment) or by filing a notice of lien, and Ms. Cross may then be able to invoke this Court’s jurisdiction under section 6330(d) to review proposed collection of tax, in which context financial hardship may sometimes be relevant.” Order, at p. 1.

And the “motion to dismiss” would torpedo Janice Marie. She claims there’s some species of “default”, but Judge Gustafson says there’s been a SNOD, timely petition and answer, so there’s jurisdiction. Therefore, Section 7459(d) instructs us that dismissing a Section 6213(a) petition where there’s jurisdiction mandates a decision giving IRS everything they want. “Consequently, if we were to dismiss the cases–even at petitioner’s request–the decisions we enter would by law constitute an adjudication that she owes the deficiencies that the IRS determined.” Order, at p. 2.

So Judge Gustafson obliges Janice Marie and doesn’t dismiss this case.

Now we’ve got that out of the way, be warned, Janice Marie: “Ms. Cross shall take care to put the correct docket number(s) on all her filings. She has frequently transposed numbers and thereby misstated the docket number in case No. 1439-13. Ms. Cross shall also refrain from making further repetitive, frivolous filings. The time she spent composing and typing her ‘Open letter’ and ‘Petition for Default Judgment and Dismissal * **’ was time utterly wasted. These and her similar previous filings flatly contradict her complaints that she lacks adequate time to prepare for trial. If Ms. Cross hereafter files meritless motions, the Court expects to deny them summarily without explanation.” Order, at p. 3. (Emphasis in original).

Bless the rounders, every one. They’re the ones that keep blogging interesting.

 

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