In Uncategorized on 04/06/2020 at 17:05

Aviators are not the only ones who need to run the checklist, no matter how familiar they are with the procedures, NOTAMs, FAA requirements, NTSB admonitions, operating manuals, and 14 CFR, applicable to their aircraft and intended use thereof.

Judge Courtney D (“CD”) Jones not only rightly abominates the sloppy and timid substitute for thought locution “and/or,” but makes sure that the Ogden Sunseteers get the Form 211 info to the classifiers (the operating types who scope the stuff out to separate the wheat from the cliché), and read and heed the classifiers’ adjurations. And the best way to do it is to run the checklist.

Here’s Mandy Mobley Li, Docket No. 5070-19W, filed 4/6/20, whose petition fails on summary J in a designated hitter from Judge CD.

Mandy Mobley claims target “…had filed false claims of rental income, dependent children, alimony paid, and mortgage interest” for two (count ‘em, two) tax years. Order, at p. 1.

Please pardon an old-time beaten-down, beaten-up, single-shingle “general practitioner with very limited experience and mediocre qualifications,” but just perhaps maybe so this is a family law thing gone wrong. Just sayin’, not fur nuthin’.

Howbeit, the Sunseteer on the case flipped it over to the classifier, who sent it back with an endorsement “checked the 211 against the returns for years at issue, no law violation and claims speculative.” Best of all, “(T)he classifier documented her findings and conclusions on a classification checklist, including her recommendation that the WBO reject petitioner’s claim.” Order, at p. 2.

The Sunseteer accepted the classifier’s statements, and sent off the final rejection, so labeled to start the thirty-day clock for petitioning, and forestall epistolary volleying.

Again Judge CD joins in rebuking the bureaucratic responsibility-ducking language of the form shootdown letter. ” The WBO’s form letter contained the same ‘and/or’ conjunction that led to a lack of clarity in Lacey v. Commissioner, 153 T.C. __, __ (slip op. at 33) (Nov. 25, 2019). In this case, the record establishes that all of the reasons stated in the letter are justified. So the general lack of clarity attendant to the “and/or” conjunction is inconsequential here. But the Court continues to be concerned that, in a closer case, this form text may create confusion when we review a summary rejection of a whistleblower claim. See Alber v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2020-20, at *8-9 n.5.” Order, at p. 2, footnote 5.

I’ve blogged both those cases. And Mandy Mobley’s complaint reminds me just a trifle of Christian Bernd Alber. See my blogpost “We Don’t Need Lacey,”1/30/20, which links to my original blogpost about Lacey.

Howbeit, the Ogden Sunseteers made sure the classifier ran the checklist and checked off the Magnificent Seven “(‘contain[s] specific * * * information’; ‘contain[s] * * * credible information’; provides “information that the whistleblower believes will lead to collected [tax] proceeds’; reports’”fail[ure] to comply with the internal revenue laws’; ‘identif[ies] the person(s) believed to have failed to comply with the internal revenue laws’; ‘provide[s] substantive information, including all available documentation’; and does not ‘provide speculative information.’” Order, at p. 4.

So clearly the Ogden Sunseteer eyeballed the classifier’s take, decided not to ship the matter on to Examination, performing thereby the evaluative process and making a clean administrative record.

Summary J for IRS.




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