Attorney-at-Law

“THE PLACE WHERE THERE IS NO DARKNESS”

In Uncategorized on 04/01/2019 at 16:44

No, not George Orwell’s 1984 torture chamber (although some unsuccessful litigants might think it resembles same), but rather a place where all is laid bare and held up to the light, The Glasshouse at 400 Second Street, Northwest.

Once again, the public’s right to know o’ercrows Rule 27(a) and beats down Rule 103’s protective shield, in Clair R. Couturier, Jr. & Vicki Couturier, Docket No. 19714-16, filed 4/1/19, and it’s no April Fools’ joke.

Clair & Vicki have excise tax problems, and petition two Section 4973 chops. IRS wants summary J (natch), and Clair & Vicki respond, but simultaneously want to file under seal their 1040s for the first of the ten (count ‘em, ten) years at issue. Sounds like an IRA retroactively rejected.

All Clair & Vicki can say in support of sealing is that ”… disclosure would harm him. But petitioner provides nothing more than bare assertions of harm. For instance, in his motion to file his income tax return under seal, petitioner states only that ‘Notwithstanding the redaction of the taxpayer identification numbers, the [Year One] Tax Return contains confidential and sensitive information regarding Mr. Couturier’s finances, including his annual gross income and various taxes paid, which are not at issue in this case. Mr. Couturier would be harmed by the public disclosure of this sensitive information, and therefore requests leave to file it under seal.’ Petitioner’s motion to file his income tax transcripts is similarly spartan, stating only that they contain ‘confidential and sensitive information regarding Mr. Couturier’s finances that is not at issue in this case’ and that ‘Mr. Couturier would be harmed by the public disclosure of this sensitive information’.” Order, at p. 2.

All y’all will remember Willie Nelson, who made similar arguments years ago, and lost. If not, read ex-Ch J L Paige (“Iron Fist”) Marvel’s above-cited order.

“Without more, petitioner’s conclusory allegations of harm cannot overcome the public’s presumptive right of access to this Court’s records.” Order, at p. 2.

And ex-Ch J Iron Fist promptly unseals what had been temporarily sealed pending this order.

So anybody who objects to letting it all hang out, whether at 400 Second Street, NW, or any trial venue, or in the trade press or blogosphere, beware. Once you petition, unless you have a real good story, anything and everything is fair game. And it may just wind up on this my blog. Section 7461 sent me.

 

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