With a Side Trip to China
There’s being obliging, and Judge David Gustafson is that certainly, but there’s also being sympathetic, and here Judge Joseph Robert Goeke shows at the head of the field.
Two Friday off-the-benchers, a day where nary an opinion can be expected from the Olympian (to say nothing of Sinaiatical) Heights of 400 Second Street, NW, from Judge Goeke, offered in contrast to a throw-down from The Great Dissenter, a/k/a The Judge Who Writes Like A Human Being (especially when peeved), s/a/k/a The Old China Hand (explanation to follow) and The Implacable, Irrefragable, Ineluctable, Incomparable, Indefatigable, Incontrovertible Foe of the Partitive Genitive, His Honor Judge Mark V. Holmes.
First batspersons, Little Heritage Enrichment Center, Inc., Docket No. 18355-14SL, filed 4/24/15. The Little Heritors were a wee bit late with their 990 and 944 for the period at issue. Note to motor racing fans: a 944 is not a vintage Porsche, but rather an Employer’s Annual Federal Tax Return.
The Little Heritors claim they’re a 501(c) whatever, and exempt. No, says Judge Goeke, and y’all wisely dropped that claim on brief, because 501(c) whatever exempts you from Subtitle A Income Tax, but not Subtitle B Employment Tax, and never the twain shall cliché. Order, at p. 8.
The Little Heritors didn’t dispute their underlying liabilities or offer any collection alternatives before the SO at the CDP, so they’re nailed. But there was more cliché over the one that was lost and found than over the other ninety-and-nine, as a much more exalted personage remarked.
Judge Goeke: “At the hearing Petitioner’s representative submitted information demonstrating that Petitioner had submitted an offer in compromise to Respondent after the case was docketed, and this offer in compromise was entered into the record at the hearing. We certainly wish Petitioner good fortune with Respondent and we hope the case is resolved via the offer in compromise. However, this offer in compromise is not a defense to the assertions in Respondent’s motion for summary judgment, as it was not submitted for review by Respondent’s settlement officer, and based upon established precedent of this Court, we will not consider information which was not made available to the settlement officer.” Order, at p. 9 (Citation omitted).
Nice touch, Judge.
Next up is Bettye Jean Draper, Docket No. 25951-13, filed 4/24/15, a sad but often-told tale. Bettye Jean, a grandma (and we all love grandmas), gets nailed for claiming a full-time student tax credit for herself and a child dependency on account of grandchild, to neither of which was she entitled, and she admits as much. However, Bettye Jean claims she was deceived by a return preparer who wrote down these fictions and vanished she knoweth not whither.
Alas and alack, says Judge Goeke.
“We’re sympathetic to the Petitioner’s position because we believe that she did not realize that her return preparer had put this information on her return. However, this misinformation on the part of the Petitioner does not relieve her of her obligation to file an accurate federal income tax return, and does not relieve her of her obligation to pay the deficiency, which results from improperly claimed education credits.” Order, at p. 6.
And Judge Goeke’s cup of kindness overfloweth.
“We are not without sympathy to the Petitioner’s plight in relying upon an irresponsible return preparer whom apparently Petitioner is not able to locate at this time. However, the law is clear, the Petitioner is liable for the taxes as determined in the notice of deficiency.” Order, at p. 6.
Now maybe the Registered Tax Return Preparer scheme that Dave Williams and Doug Shulman floated, but DC Circuit wiped out, mightn’t have helped Bettye Jean, because the lowlifes will always dodge, and fly under the radar, but something has to be done.
And only Congress can do it. No further comment.
Finally, the Old China Hand, Judge Holmes. Here he encounters Robert A. Morgan, Docket No. 21778-14, filed 4/24/15. And it’s a designated hitter, because Judge Holmes is obviously peeved.
IRS’s counsel hit Robert A. with a Rule 91(f) “we hold these truths to be self-evident” motion; agree or tell us why you don’t, point by point. Robert A. jumps into the fray, perhaps seeking rounderhood.
Judge Holmes is not amused, and loses it. “Mr. Morgan instead responded with 61 pages of tax-protester blather about public rights, not being a citizen under the Fourteenth Amendment, and even the old U.S. Court for China.” Order, at p. 1 (Footnote omitted, but I’m coming to that). So the facts are stipulated even without Robert A.’s panegyric to whatever. And, at no extra charge, Judge Holmes, clearly fed up, shows Robert A. the Section 6673 yellow card.
Now for the “Old China Hand” sobriquet I add to Judge Holmes’ long line of attributes. Judge Holmes tells us all about the U. S. China Court.
“This was a district court with extraterritorial jurisdiction over Americans living in China. Created in 1906, see Act of June 30, 1906, ch. 3934, 34 Stat. 814 (Creating a United States court of China and prescribing the jurisdiction thereof), Congress abolished it during World War II, see Treaty for the Relinquishment of Extraterritorial Rights in China and the Regulation of Related Matters, U.S.-China, art. I, Jan. 11, 1943, 57 Stat. 767. It has no discernible relevance to this case.” Order, at p. 1, Footnote 1).
Judge Holmes won’t let Robert A. hock him a China (as my grandma would have said).