Attorney-at-Law

TRACER OF LOST PERSONS

In Uncategorized on 12/28/2021 at 17:19

Those of us on our third Medicare card (the old SSAN version,. the paper-with-code version, and now the plastic-fantastic) may remember Mr Keen and his sidekick Mike Kelly from the radio so long ago, the longest-running eponymous detective series.

I doubt the anonymous SO in Brian K. Bunton and Karen A. Bunton, 2021 T. C. Memo. 141,* filed 12/28/21 was alive when Mr Keen and Mike faded from the airwaves. But she treads in their well-worn footsteps, as Judge Christian N. (“Speedy”) Weiler allows.

I won’t waste time with the usual FICA/SE conflation with income tax protester jive that Brian and Karen are trying.

The point here is what the administrative record showed IRS had done, before Brian and Karen raised non-receipt of the SNOD, to try to litigate liability.

“Throughout the CDP proceeding petitioners sought to challenge the underlying liability. However, the record shows that an SNOD for [year at issue] was sent to petitioners by certified mail at the … address…. A copy of the SNOD was also sent to petitioners’ representative, Mr. B. The administrative record reflects that the IRS had submitted to the USPS an ‘Address Information Request’ or ‘Postal Tracer’ for petitioners’ current address and received confirmation that mail was deliverable to them. The IRS had verified their current mailing address before issuing the SNOD, the same address they reported on their Forms 2848.” 2021 T. C. Memo. 141, at p. 14.

It’s not enough for the IRS tax transcript to show mailing to an address. Judge Speedy Weiler does a drill-down.

“Where a taxpayer specifically alleges in a CDP hearing that he never received a notice of deficiency, an Appeals officer cannot rely solely on tax transcripts to verify that a notice has been sent. Instead, the Appeals officer is to review the actions of the IRS when the notice of deficiency was issued and the underlying documents to confirm that the correct mailing address was used to send the notice of deficiency to the taxpayer. Even when the notice was properly mailed, a taxpayer may be able to challenge the underlying liability when he or she can establish nonreceipt of the notice.” 2021 T. C. Memo. 141, at p. 13, footnote 11. (Citations omitted).

Practice tip: If you have a CDP with a non-receipt-of-SNOD issue, and a credible client, check the admin record to see if the AO found a “Postal Tracer” request and response. If it isn’t there, make a note. Might could be maybe so it’s useful.

*Brian K Bunton and Karen A Bunton 2021 T C Memo 141, 12 28 21

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