Taxpayer’s claim revived

Susan Rothkamm sued for wrongful levy, after the IRS seized a CD in her name to satisfy a tax liability of her husband.  The Fifth Circuit reversed the dismissal of her claim, finding that she had standing as a “taxpayer” under the broad definition of 7701 of the Internal Revenue Code: “The term ‘taxpayer’ means any person subject to any internal revenue tax.”  The Court also found that limitations was tolled during the pendency of her application for a Taxpayer Assistance Order, and that the IRS did not have discretion to affect the length of that tolling period.  Rothkamm v. United States, No. 14-31164 (Sept. 21, 2015).  A dissent warned: “I dissent from the majority’s newly minted tolling rule. While this creativity is driven by a desire to achieve fairness, it suffers the vice common to such endeavors – it does the opposite by disrupting a carefully structured regime for the resolution of disputes between the IRS and property owners.”

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