In Uncategorized on 02/10/2017 at 14:44

It really isn’t an epithet I’d apply to Judge Cohen, whose all-business demeanor is well-known. She hews carefully to the statutes, regs and rules.

Today, however, an IRS miscue draws a sharp rebuke. Remember, this is Friday, when no opinions and few designated hitters are to be found on the order board.

It’s Edna Trigo-Valdez, Docket No. 14169-16, filed 2/10/17, but Edna is in standby mode here, because this order deals with Mark A. Valdez.

We know where an MFJ or spousal situation is in play, and only one spouse gets named and petitions, the other can jump in if invited. IRS does the inviting.

But here’s the problem. “On February 7, 2017, Respondent’s Notice of Filing of Petition and Right to Intervene on Mark A. Valdez 02/07/2017 was filed belatedly and without the proper motion for leave to file the late notice.” Order, at p. 1.

The dates are relevant, since this case is already on for trial. And the sixty-day time to intervene of Rule 325 means that Mark or Edna or IRS could ask for more time on the eve of trial.

Judge Cohen: “If the nonrequesting spouse files a notice of intervention within the time allowed, an otherwise inappropriate continuance may be necessary, thus wasting the Court’s time set aside for trials on the scheduled calendar. If no notice of intervention is filed, trial may proceed.” Order, at p. 1.

But of course no one will know until Day Sixty if Mark takes his full time to decide.

Still, Mark does have the right to intervene, and this wasn’t his fault.

But Judge Cohen isn’t thrilled: “…respondent [IRS] shall file with the Court a report setting forth an explanation as to why the notice filed February 7, 2017, was late and what steps have been taken to avoid such delinquency in the future.” Order, at p. 1.

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