The Church of Freedom encourages its members to file “tax protestor” returns with the IRS, objecting to both the government’s failure to use a gold standard in payment of tax liabilities and its sizable expenditures for social welfare programs. These returns routinely are overturned by the Tax Court as frivolous, with delinquent taxes, penalties, and interest due, and the church has engaged in a long-standing, sometimes ugly, battle with the IRS over various constitutional rights. Meanwhile, church members continue to file returns in this manner. Ellen overheard church members talking about “roughing up” the IRS agents who were scheduled to conduct an audit of various members’ returns. She went to the IRS and informed them of the danger they might encounter. At the IRS’s direction, Ellen then took a key clerical job at church headquarters. In this context, she had access to useful documentation and over a period of a few months gave to the IRS copies of church mailing lists and other data. She also helped record key conversations among church leaders and search the church’s trash for other documents. In other words, Ellen helped the IRS build a case of civil and criminal tax fraud against the church and various members. All these materials were given voluntarily to Ellen by church leaders in her context as an employee. Church members never suspected that she was working with the IRS. After delivering the various materials to the IRS, Ellen quit her job with the church and severed all communications with the IRS. After the parties were charged with fraud, the government’s case was found to be insufficiently supported by the evidence, and no penalties were assessed. Afterward, church leaders sued Ellen in her role as IRS informant, charging that she had violated their First Amendment rights of free association and their Fourth Amendment rights against illegal search and seizure. Governmental employees are immune from such charges, but Ellen was only an informant to the IRS and not its employee. Can the church collect damages from Ellen for informing on them?
Answer to relevant QuestionsIn a modern, industrial society, the tax system is derived from several disciplines. Identify the disciplines that play this role in the United States. Explain how each of them affects the U. S. tax system. May a tax practitioner who is a CPA form a CPA partnership with an IRS agent who is also a CPA? What limits (if any) would be placed on such a partnership? In each of the following (independent) situations, state which AICPA Code of Professional Conduct (if any) is violated by a CPA in public practice. a. The CPA opens a tax practice and names the new firm “Jill’s Super ...Butcher attended meetings of tax protestors for many years in which the constitutionality of the federal income tax and its means of collection were routinely challenged. Members of various protest groups were provided with ...Duane paid his 2010 federal income taxes in January 2013 in the amount of $ 10,000, and then paid $ 4,000 interest and penalties on this amount in May 2014. In April 2016, Duane filed a claim for refund of the $ 14,000, as a ...
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