In Uncategorized on 08/26/2020 at 09:41

The silt-stir engendered by Clay merrily rolls along, and easing its path (like a first-class sweep in a curling match) is The Taxpayer’s Friend, STJ Diana L. Leyden.

Again we have IRS claiming that the Correspondence Examination Automated Support (CEAS) program obviates the need for any Section 6751(b) Boss Hoss sign-off, as the electronic chopper slices, dices, and chops untouched by human hands.

But in the case of Sandra D. Hallmon, Docket No. 19008-19S, filed 8/26/20, STJ Di isn’t so sure about absence of human involvement. Once again, CEAS turned out a 30-day letter; and, like others in similar circumstances whom I have blogged, Sandra stood mute.

“Contrary to respondent’s assertion that no Service employee was involved in the assertion of the penalty, the Case Summary includes the name “SHEA PATRICIA” under Examiner Name. Based on the record in this case, the Court would find it helpful to receive an additional response from respondent explaining why the Case Summary includes a name of an examiner and how he has concluded that the penalty was automatically calculated if there was an examiner assigned to this case.” Order, at p. 2.

Possibly the CEAS assigns an examiner as a control or placeholder when it sends out the 30-day letter, in case there is a response from the taxpayer. If so, it might be a good idea for IRS counsel to make that part of the boilerplate answer in such cases.

In any event, IRS has some ‘splainin’ to do.



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