A painstaking panel issued two detailed tax opinions on the same day. In the first, “substantial underpayment” penalties were found appropriate, in a partnership-level proceeding, where substantial authority did not support the taxpayer’s position as to a well-known inappropriate tax shelter. NPR Investments LLC v. United States, No. 10-41219 (Jan. 23, 2014). In the second, the Court affirmed a finding that certain claimed tax credits were not “qualified research expenses” within the meaning of the Internal Revenue Code, while also remanding to enforce a stipulation made by government before the Tax Court, In an evidentiary holding of broader interest, the court found no abuse of discretion in the exclusion under Rule 403 of the taxpayers’ alleged lab records, agreeing that they were voluminous and not pertinent to the specific tax law issues at hand. Shami v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, No. 12-60727 (Jan. 23, 2014). Both opinions discuss the appropriate standards of review for appeal from the U.S. Tax Court.
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