Attorney-at-Law

IGNORANCE IS BLISS? – PART DEUX

In Uncategorized on 01/14/2016 at 15:48

Muhammad R. Siddiqui & Sadaf Rashid, Docket No. 27469-14, filed 1/14/16, don’t get to find out the answer, because Mu isn’t ignorant and Sad isn’t involved, in this designated off-the-bencher from that Obliging Jurist, Judge David Gustafson.

Mu has a bushelbasketful of unsubstantiated Sched As, including unreimbursed business expenses in amounts and years he can’t establish, medical payments for admittedly dependent parents ditto, and mileage for carrying friends’ kids along with his own to various events from his masjid (admittedly a 501(c)(3)).

Easy enough for IRS’ counsel to blow up Mu. And Sadaf apparently was at home with their four minor children, earning no money but working hard.

So why blog this one? Well, because Mu has a bunch of degrees, and that gets him the penalty chops.

“Admittedly, Mr. Siddiqui is not a tax expert, but he is an intelligent and educated man. Even apart from his inability or failure to substantiate his deductions at the time of trial in 2016, the errors on his [late filed] tax return… claiming deductions for medical expenses incurred in a prior year, claiming charitable contribution deductions for the cost of driving himself and his family to religious and recreational activities, and claiming deductions for employee expenses incurred four years earlier…were errors that should not have been committed by a person of above-average intelligence, with twelve years’ prior experience in filing tax returns. If… Mr. Siddiqui did not know the basic rule that one deducts in a given year the expenses that he paid or incurred in that year, then one cannot say that he exerted appropriate ‘effort to assess [his] proper tax liability’.” Order, at pp. 15-16 of transcript.

Mu’s education? “In Pakistan he had completed a bachelor’s degree in physics, chemistry, and mathematics; a second bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering; and a master’s degree in applied physics. In the U.S. he earned a master’s degree in computer science at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois.” Order, at p. 4 of transcript.

Practitioner, do you really want your client’s resume on the record? Might it not be well to tell your client to hold off on bragging about his degrees?

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