In Uncategorized on 09/02/2016 at 17:25

The highly exalted source from which the title is taken once again proves how apposite that source can be.

This time the story proving the point is told by The Great Dissenter, a/k/a The Judge Who Writes Like a Human Being, s/a/k/a The Incomparable, Incontrovertible, Irrefragable, Indomitable, Ineluctable, Ineffable, Illustrious and Indefatigable Foe of the Partitive Genitive, and Old China Hand, Judge Mark V. Holmes.

Sir W. S. Gilbert to the contrary notwithstanding,  the Merriman is the maid, Merriman R. Mathewson, Docket No. 12087-10, filed 9/2/16.

As the old wedding ceremony had it, Merri’s husband endowed Merri with his worldly goods, but they included a pre-marital thwacking great deficiency from a listed transaction that he carried over onto their MFJ return, plus, at no extra charge, a 40% valuation chop.

Merri wants innocent spousery, but her problem is what she knew.

She tries the Lennon-McCartney 1966 gambit: “I said, even though you know what you know, I know that I’m ready to leave.”

That doesn’t get it with Judge Holmes. “Mathewson argues that whether she knew or had reason to know of her husband’s understatement is irrelevant because the loss carryforward was attributable to the …tax year, before they were married. We can assume that’s true — but the standard in section 6015(b) is whether the spouse requesting relief knew or had reason to know of an understatement of tax. I.R.C. § 6015(b)(1)(C).” Order, at p. 2 (Footnote omitted, but it says it doesn’t matter that Merri didn’t know about the chop; all she needed to know was the understatement of tax.)

Now generally (I love that word), innocent spousery is a question of facts and factors, with much marching and counter-marching around the Section 6015 prickly pear.

But Merri lets the feline poke its wee nose out of the cliché, and that’s the point of this blogpost (and I can hear my readers say, “There is one?”).

“Mathewson has not provided any facts necessary for a determination of her knowledge. Indeed, she concedes that she ‘might not be able to establish that she had no reason to know that Respondent might not assert a deficiency in tax . . . against [her husband]… based on the carryforward … of unused capital loss of[his] from his participation in… the…Tax Shelter.’” Order, at p. 2.

Tell it not in Gath.

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