In Uncategorized on 11/03/2017 at 17:10

No, not the 2017 Tony-nominee for best musical. No theatrical criticism on this blog. But today Tax Court has two (count ‘em, two) orders dealing with those far away…or far apart.

2590 Associates, LLC, 5615 Associates, LLC, as successor in interest to 5615 Associates, LP, Tax Matters Partner, Docket No. 12924-16, filed 11/3/17, looks like a simple joust over a continuance (that’s called an “adjournment” by us State courtiers).

IRS is asking for the time out, and the numbers guys are objecting. But curiously, it’s IRS who has the problem.

“Respondent states that petitioner objects to respondent’s motion. Respondent maintains that certain witnesses may be unavailable for trial.” Order, at p. 1.

Well, the numbers guys have the burden of proof, so maybe this is one of those façades or phony partnerships where valuation is critical. So maybe IRS needs the absentee heavy artillerists.

Judge Goeke has ways to deal with this.

“If respondent has subpoenaed witnesses and they are unavailable, we can discuss alternative means to take their testimony at trial but that is not a basis for a continuance.” Order, at p. 1.

Facetime conquers all?

IRS claims Siemer Milling Company, Docket No. 21655-15, filed 11/3/17, is putting them through the mill, but Siemer claims IRS is dodging the “play nice and stip it out” rules.

Judge Buch rushes to the defense of the “bedrock of all Tax Court practice,” the cure-all for litigation and settlement.

Siemer put in 343 (count ‘em, 343) separately numbered matters to be stiped out. IRS bought nine, edited nine more, and rejected 325 (count ‘em, 325) and didn’t say why.

Was Siemer playing the clown, making frivolous, burdensome, scandalous requests?

“Siemer Milling Co. filed a motion for order to show cause why proposed facts and evidence should not be accepted as established pursuant to Rule 91(f). That motion did not ‘set forth the sources, reasons, and basis for claiming, with respect to each such matter, that it should be stipulated’. See Rule 91(f)(1)(B). However, the motion recited that the documents underlying the proposed stipulations had been in the Commissioner’s possession for over three years. See Rule 91(f)(1)(D). The Court granted that motion and ordered the Commissioner to show cause why the facts and evidence set forth in the proposed stipulations should not be deemed admitted.” Order, at p. 1.

Well, IRS didn’t state what they disagreed with, only that Siemer didn’t attach the papers they relied upon.

Judge Buch brings together the two parties who are far apart.

“While it appears that the Commissioner has been uncooperative as to this series of proposed stipulations, it cannot be said that Siemer Milling is without fault. While it is unclear whether there is sufficient time for the parties to have a ‘do-over’, we will permit Siemer Milling to resubmit its proposed stipulations with an accelerated timeline.” Order, at p. 2.

And Judge Buch tells them how to do it.

“Siemer Milling, if it chooses, may resubmit its proposed stipulations to the Commissioner. If it resubmits its proposed stipulations, each proposed stipulation shall refer to the source of the underlying information (at a minimum, directing the Commissioner to the specific page). If Siemer Milling serves a new set of proposed stipulations on the Commissioner, the Commissioner shall respond separately as to each proposed stipulation. For any proposed stipulation that the Commissioner does not accept without alteration, the Commissioner must set forth a specific basis for not accepting the proposed stipulation. While evidentiary objections may be noted, they will not be considered a sufficient basis for a failure to stipulate.” Order, at p. 3.

And make it snappy.

This is a good one to have handy when confronted by brush-offs or stonewalls.

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