In Uncategorized on 04/18/2016 at 17:12

I said a long time ago that a blogger is a journalist, and that’s true even of a blogger who limits his coverage to an area as arcane as United States Tax Court.

So today, with only an unsubstantiated deduction T. C. Memo and no designated hitters, I had to dig and keep digging, lest readers in 135 countries be disappointed.

It didn’t sound like much, Michael L. Rakestaw & Kathleen M. Rakestraw, Docket No. 4213-13, filed 4/18/16, known to tax practitioners far and wide as D-Day.

Mike & Kath want to toss their attorney, whom I’ll call Tom. They so move; IRS responds. Exactly what IRS’s response was doesn’t appear, but whatever it was, coupled with Tom’s failure to say anything (even though Judge Chiechi ordered him to bukh, as they say Somewhere East of Suez), Mike’s & Kath’s motion to toss gets tossed.

No mention of impending trial (the usual reason why motions to toss counsel get short shrift, mostly “OK, but try the case your own selves”).

So my curiosity was piqued, and I did a docket search. You never can tell what you’ll find. Well, a year ago, Judge Chiechi entered a stipulated judgment aggregating about $150K against Mike & Kath.

Two months ago Mike & Kath tried to vacate, a wee bit late. And Tom’s response apparently didn’t discuss a lot of what Mike & Kath had to say about Tom’s performance to the satisfaction of Judge Chiechi.

So between IRS’ response (hidden from online public view) and Tom’s nonresponse, Tom is still in, the decision is still unvacated, and I’m left in suspense.

I thought there was a general principle that Tax Court proceedings were to be public.

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