In Uncategorized on 09/28/2017 at 19:26

STJ Panuthos won’t seal the filings in Michael A. Bandish & Jacqueline M. Bandish, Docket No. 13342-16, filed 9/28/17, even though Mike claims “…petitioners are concerned about the safety of themselves and their family, and assert that they keep all their personal information confidential due to Mr. Bandish’s occupation.” Order, at p. 1.

Well, Mike and Jacquie are pro sese, and apparently not blowers. What bases there are for their concerns aren’t spelled out in this designated hitter, but apparently they aren’t enough to cut the Dijonnaise in STJ Panuthos’ court.

“Although the Court understands that petitioners have concerns, the assertions made are not sufficient to overcome the presumption in favor of public access to the Court’s records.” Order, at p. 2.

Section 7461 shines a bright spotlight on all Tax Court’s doings, and people caught in the headlights are just collateral damage in the Glasshouse at 400 Second Street, NW. Their Tax Court doings are open to all comers, unless they are at clear and present risk of death or bodily injury to self or immediate family. In witness whereof, see my blogpost “The Whistleblower Blown Up,” 5/20/14.

So Mike and Jacquie have to take their chances.

But STJ Panuthos has some consolatory words for them, as, in homage to the Bard of Long Island, he sings the filing electronic.

“The Court notes that Rule 27(b)(2) of the Tax Court Rules of Practice and Procedure provides that individuals other than the parties and their counsel have only limited remote electronic access to the docket record maintained by the Court. Thus petitioners’ address would not ordinarily be available to the public by remote electronic access. In addition, the Court regularly redacts a taxpayer’s address for purposes of remote electronic access on a decision document when the decision is entered. Accordingly, third parties, unrelated to this docket, would not normally have electronic access to petitioners’ address.” Order, at p. 2.

Judge, may I point out most respectfully that a bus ticket from much of the country to The City in the Swamp (that’s topographically, not politically, speaking) is not beyond the reach of even a low-balance prepaid credit card in the hands of one who wishes Mike and Jacquie ill. Moreover, may I say with all deference that one can, without extraordinary exertion or unusual difficulty, walk from the usual bus drop-offs to the Glasshouse at 400 Second Street, NW, and there peruse whatever files are unsealed and unredacted?

Where technology fails, determination may succeed.


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