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Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Dellinger on Circular 230 in Estate & Gift Tax Practice

Tax_analysts_164Kip Dellinger (Kallman & Co., Los Angeles) has published Circular 230, Estate & Gift Tax Practice:  The Common Sense Approach, 109 Tax Notes 1197 (Nov. 28, 2005), also available on the Tax Analysts web site as Doc 2005-23244, 2005 TNT 228-17. Here is the Conclusion:

Representatives of the OPR have repeatedly admonished tax practitioners to use common sense in evaluating, vetting, applying, and implementing the written advice-covered opinion provisions of Circular 230. There seems to be no reason not to take them at their word. And by doing so, tax professionals may find themselves able to define -- or least become participants in defining -- the scope and, therefore, the reach of the written advice standards to tax practice and to define whether advice that is subject to the standards falls with the category of a covered opinion under Circular 230, Section 10.35 or whether it is "other written advice" governed by the provisions of Circular 230, Section 10.37.

There is surely no reason for tax professionals to engage in as much hand wringing over the covered opinion standards as has been the case. It certainly does not benefit the tax profession, and the end users of our services should expect and receive more from us. Ultimately, we should run the risk associated with attempting to fairly define the scope and reach of the covered opinion standards within reasonable parameters of common sense and trust that OPR will be true to its word. We owe it to our clients to see that not only we, but also the Internal Revenue Service gets this right.

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