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Should The IRS be Able to Assess Penalties For Filing a Frivolous Tax Return?


Posted on December 16, 2014

In a recent case, the Tax Court upheld the IRS’ assertion of seven frivolous tax return penalties because the taxpayer claimed zero income and zero tax liability on his tax returns and also claimed a refund for the full amount of his withholding. The taxpayer also made tax protestor-type arguments in support of his belief that he did not have to pay taxes.

The IRS proposed seven frivolous tax return penalties, each in the amount of $5,000.00.

The taxpayer understandably did not like these penalties, so he filed suit with the United States Tax Court.

The United States Tax Court held in favor of the IRS and the taxpayer appealed.

The United States Court of Appeals for the eleventh circuit also held in favor of the IRS and upheld the assertion of frivolous tax return penalties against the taxpayer.

Do you think that penalties should be asserted against a taxpayer for filing a frivolous tax return? We think so.


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