In Uncategorized on 05/09/2022 at 15:51

It is possible for a check to serve as a determination. See my blogpost “Unappealing,” 5/27/17. So Timothy J. Lewis, T. C. Memo.2022-47, filed 5/9/22, having lost part of his Section 7623 whistleblower award to sequestration (that’s Congress-speak for “short-changing”) two years back (see my blogpost “The 6.9% Solution,” 4/8/20), tries again.

As my above-referred-to blogpost says, Tim petitioned the determination letter the Ogden Sunseteers gave him, and lost. The award amount was correct; that Congress scooped 6.9% had nothing to do with the Ogden Sunseteers, who just followed OMB’s direction.

Now Tim claims that when IRS issued him the check reflecting the sequestration, that was a separate determination, so he gets another shot. Tim doesn’t get the shot, but his trusty attorney gets a Taishoff “Good Try, Third Class.”

Judge Travis A. (“Tag”) Greaves: “…a whistleblower’s award check constituted an appealable determination within the meaning of section 7623(b)(4) where the WBO did not issue a final determination letter confirming the amount of the whistleblower’s award. The only ‘final decision’ the whistleblower received in that case concerning his award amount was the award check itself. Under those conditions, we found that the award check embodied the equivalent of a final determination letter notifying the whistleblower of its ‘final administrative decision’ regarding his award, i.e., an appealable determination under section 7623(b)(4).” T. C. Memo. 2022-47, at p. 4 (Citations omitted).

But in this case Tim did get the final determination letter, timely petitioned, and lost.

And yes, there can be more than one determination, as when a determination gets remanded and a supplemental determination is issued. But that didn’t happen here.


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