In Uncategorized on 10/29/2019 at 16:19

On a day with no opinions or designated hitters, I am thrown back on reflections on Tax Court practice and procedure. Joe Daniel Skelton, Docket No. 15412-19, filed 10/29/19, offers me one such. Ch J Maurice B (“Mighty Mo”) Foley tosses JD’s petition at IRS’ request, to which toss JD has no objection.

JD petitioned the usual eighteen-year bundle (tax years 2000 to 2017), and of course neither SNOD nor NOD was in evidence.

So why blog it? Because IRS asks for a Section 6673 frivolity chop, and Ch J Mighty Mo shows JD the yellow card. “Although an I.R.C. section 6673 penalty will not be imposed here, petitioner is admonished that the Court will consider imposing such a penalty in future cases commenced by petitioner seeking similar relief under similar circumstances.” Order, at p. 2.

Wherefore it might be inferred that JD was a Wit, Wag or Wiseacre, because he had earlier sent in a document bearing the unusual title “Affidavit of Lawful Claim of Title, Will, Execution of Will, Declaration of Status & Appointment and Standing Orders for the Trustees.” This document, however, is not available online, and your reporter hasn’t the slightest intention of trucking on down to The Glasshouse at 400 Second Street, NW, to enlighten you, dear reader, with its contents.

And JD thereafter filed a motion to dismiss for cause, leading one to conclude that at least one of the three Ws above-mentioned might be in play.

But I’d like to say a word about petitioning something that a Tax Court Judge mightn’t find to be a SNOD or NOD.

We all know that there is no form of SNOD mandated either by statute or regulation. Only the taxpayer, tax and year need be stated, and of course the contact info for TAS. NODs can issue for equivalent hearings (no right to petition), as well as the usual laundry list where the NOD plus petition is the ticket to Tax Court (worker classification, innocent spousery, revocation of 501(c)(3) status, whistleblowing, and passport-grabbing).

But how is the ordinary taxpayer to know which is which? See my blogpost “Fake Out,” 12/16/14, where an IRS letter that says they sent a SNOD when they didn’t, and to petition Tax Court if you disagree with IRS’ numbers, somehow isn’t a SNOD.  See a recent, like yesterday, example, my blogpost “Petition Everything,” 10/28/19, where a SNOD gave the same deficiencies for two related entities at the same last known address, but if the wrong entity petitions, the right entity gets tossed too late to petition.

And there is a plethora of orders tossing petitioners who petition one IRS-standard-issue piece of paper or another that isn’t a SNOD, or the right kind of NOD (remember, tax refund and child support levies aren’t tickets to Tax Court).

So before deciding a priori (as Judge Scholar Al or Judge Scholar Pat might say) that someone dropping a petition (and in JD’s case, even ponying up the sixty simoleons) is a Wit, Wag or Wiseacre deserving of The Yellow Card, maybe there is legitimate ground for confusion. Although in JD’s case, not so much.

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