Department of Justice attorneys for the Internal Revenue Service told Judicial Watch on Friday that Lois Lerner’s emails, indeed all government computer records, are backed up by the federal government in case of a government-wide catastrophe. The Obama administration attorneys said that this back-up system would be too onerous to search.
Tremendous. After telling the court that there just was no way on earth those emails survived, now they say there is a backup, but it’s just too much of a hassle for them to use it to comply with the court’s orders. I find it hard to imagine the brashest private-sector lawyer saying something like that, at least more than once.
But wait, there’s more:
The IRS filing in federal Judge Emmet Sullivan’s court reveals shocking new information. The IRS destroyed Lerner’s Blackberry AFTER it knew her computer had crashed and after a Congressional inquiry was well underway. As an IRS official declared under the penalty of perjury, the destroyed Blackberry would have contained the same emails (both sent and received) as Lois Lerner’s hard drive.
Peter Reilly, Home Sweet RV Does Not Always Produce Best Tax Result. Peter discusses the recreational vehicle tax Catch-22 we noted recently.
Paul Neiffer, How to Sell Your Land and Pay No Tax – MAYBE. It involves stretching out the payments and keeping your other income down.
Jason Dinesen, More Commentary About Year-Round Proactive Services to Clients. “Those of us who are good professionals rarely demand the respect we have earned. And then we wonder why clients seemingly don’t respect us, don’t value us, don’t listen to our advice, or jump ship the moment you breathe about a rate increase.”
Tony Nitti, Tax Geek Tuesday: Computing Earnings and Profits. “The primary purpose for computing E&P is to determine whether a distribution represents a taxable dividend, a nontaxable return of shareholder capital, or capital gain to the recipient shareholders.”
Leslie Book, A Stolen Check, Mistaken Identity and Prisoners (Procedurally Taxing):
This post considers Hill v US, a case from the Court of Federal Claims involving a prisoner named Mark Hill whose $1182 tax refund was stolen and cashed by another prisoner with the same name after the prison system mistakenly delivered an IRS letter relating to the missing refund check to the wrong Mark Hill. With time on his hands, but no check, the right Mark Hill sought justice in the form of a new check. After getting the runaround from the IRS, the right Mark Hill sued the US to force it to issue a new refund check. For good measure, he also wanted interest and punitive damages.
Turns out the IRS doesn’t get any more helpful if you are behind bars.
Robert D. Flach serves your fresh Tuesday Buzz, with links about smart giving, educational savings options, and what you can earn working tax season at a national return prep franchise.
That’s a long time. Cobb County man sentenced to 20 years for ID theft, tax fraud (ajc.com). The guy is also supposed to pay back $5 million he stole. Good luck on that. Sure, the guy should go away for a long time, but the real crime is that the IRS let him steal that much from the taxpayers.
Jeremy Scott, Fracking Taxes Help States Now, but What About the Future? (Tax Analysts Blog) “North Dakota has been transformed by its rapidly growing energy sector, but it should be cautious about staking too much of its fiscal future on continually increasing severance taxes.”
Andrew Lundeen, Solutions on Inversions and Corporate Tax Reform (Tax Policy Blog).
Steve Warnhoff, Will Congress Let Burger King’s Shareholders Have It Their Way? (Tax Justice Blog). If it means we get Tim Horton’s donuts, I’m all for the proposed merger.
Renu Zaretsky, Tax Rates: Growth, Competition, and Debt. The TaxVox headline roundup ponders the effects of individual rate cuts, the badness of corporate rates in the U.S., and film credits in North Carolina, among other things.
Have a nice day. 1.2 Billion Reasons to Worry: Security firm reports Russian crime ring compromised 1.2 billion usernames and passwords (John Lande, Iowa Banking Law Blog)
News from the Profession. Extra-Marital Affairs Site Claims Accountants are Kings of Romance Because Their Jobs are Boring (Adrienne Gonzalez, Going Concern).