Attorney-at-Law

CPA = USTC? JUDGE JOE SAYS NO

In Uncategorized on 08/14/2020 at 13:23

There are those recurring themes, of the kind gardeners used to call “hardy perennials,” that flourish at 400 Second Street, NW, in The State That Isn’t. That consists of invasive species CPA and their relative, the mis-called POA.

To refresh the recollection of those who need it but won’t read it, in the tax world Form 2848 Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative is either a piece of paper or a concatenation of electrons. The person, which said document authorizes to act for the principal, is called the “Representative.” A human being cannot be a POA, unless he or she is literally a paper tiger.

Howbeit, no Representative, however credentialed s/he may be, may appear in Tax Court unless admitted to practice in USTC. See Section 7452 and Rule 200 for more.

Formerly some judges winked at these requirements in the early stages of a case, letting letters from CPAs serve as minor procedural motions. I’ve blogged a lot of these; I’ll spare you the list. There must be dozens that I haven’t blogged. But they recur constantly, like non-endangered knotweed.

Here’s Judge Joseph W. Nega taking a stand against an invasive species, in Wayne Lawton & Imogene Lawton, Docket No. 3660-19, filed 8/14/20.

“The Court notes that petitioners’ C.P.A. appears on the petition and has participated on the conference calls with the Court. The Court’s records indicate that ST is not admitted to practice before the Tax Court. Accordingly, she may not enter an appearance to represent taxpayers before the Court. Unlike the IRS and some other Courts, the Tax Court does not recognize powers of attorney.” Order, at p. 1. (Name omitted).

Burt Judge Nega is willing to give Wayne & Imogene a break. They don’t need to file Form 10.

“The Court will send all future correspondence directly to petitioners’ address which was informally provided to the Court.” Order, at p. 1.

But Wayne & Imogene had better do their teletrial prep and talk to IRS’ counsel in furtherance thereof.

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