In Uncategorized on 06/24/2020 at 17:24

It’s the run-up (or more properly, the walk-up) to the true start of summer, the July Fourth weekend. Today being Johannestag notwithstanding, Tax Court has already begun the lapse into the doldrums, with neither opinion nor designated hitter to slake the blogger’s thirst for copy.

So I’m surprised, but gratified, that Judge Nega is putting the pedal to the cliché in Estate of Eileen A. O’Malley, Deceased, Mary A. Shannon, Executor, Docket No. 18633-13, filed 6/24/20.

This long-running show is coming up on Anniversary Seven. Judge Nega notes “…the case has developed into a lengthy docket record.” Order, at p. 1. Counsel have shuttled in and out like short relievers in a slugfest, with an appearance (non-electronic) by Old Bill Wise, celebrated technophobe; see my blogpost “(Old) Technophobes, Rejoice!” 12/28/13.

There’s a plethora of unopposed continuances, but Judge Nega has been on this case for only ten months or so, only gaving up one continuance.

Now we’ve seen Tax Court cases go on for decades (e.g., the Kesting saga), to end only with the deaths of all the non-governmental participants.

But today, when everything seems somnolent, Judge Nega has had enough.

“Upon review of the parties’ status report it is clear that the parties differ in their characterization of the facts and the status of this case. The Court is concerned about the seeming lack of progress by the parties’ [sic] with respect to their settlement negotiations. Therefore the Court will give the parties one last opportunity to work together in good faith to narrow the issues in an effort to settle this case.” Order, at p. 1. (Emphasis by the Court).

Apparently IRS made a settlement offer to Mary. If she’s unhappy with it, let her make a counteroffer to IRS and tell Judge Nega that she did.

In any case, by 9/30, let both sides report, wherein “(T)he parties shall identify the meetings the parties have held (or scheduled) toward the preparation of the stipulation of facts and/or their efforts to settle the case.” Order, at p. 2.

A little judicial intervention can move things along. Even in summer.




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