TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Raging IRS: Martin Scorsese, Al Pacino Hit With Tax Liens

IRS Logo Movie director Martin Scorsese ($2.85 million) and actor Al Pacino ($188,000) have been hit with IRS tax liens, apparently arising at least in part from their association with convicted celebrity accountant Kenneth Starr. (Hat Tip: Bob Kamman.)

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They'd better make sure to check if it's an actual lien, or just a notice of lien. They are two separate things. They'd also better demand to see the assessment against them on form 23C, which the IRS likely can't produce. They'd also better ask to see the abstract of the court decision, proving they were afforded due process. Otherwise, the "liens" are illegal with no force. They also need to demand a copy of the driver's license of any agents involved, as well as a copy of their Pocket Commission. I'll bet they have an A on them, which means that they only have administrative authority.

Oh, and the IRS isn't a government agency, its code has no legal effect in any one of the 50 states, and a lot of other things to numerous to mention concerning its so-called "authority." Why does the IRS have to ask the Sheriff of any county for assistance in seizing somebody's property? Because it has no authority to do so. And if they have no authority, they certainly can't delegate something that they don't have. Any sheriff assisting something like that is guilty of the second-degree felony called Conversion of Property.

Posted by: Big M | Mar 9, 2011 10:08:55 AM

Reading this should get them off the hook, which in reality for taxes that they do not even owe.

If you refuse to pay, the IRS will file a document called a “Notice of Federal Tax Lien” in the local County Clerk’s office. This is a very deceptive document. Keep one thing in mind a “Notice” is not the “Lien” itself. The “Lien” is a totally separate and distinct document from the “Notice”. The County Clerk, through abysmal ignorance files the “Notice of Federal Tax Lien” as if it was an actual “Lien”. These are two separate and distinct documents. The County Clerk never requests the actual “Lien” from the IRS agent. If they were to request this document, the IRS agent would get very irate and threaten the County Clerk for their non-cooperation. Of course, the actual “Lien” does not exist anywhere in the known Universe.

Posted by: John Unruh | Mar 9, 2011 2:45:15 PM

Big M's comment was sufficiently intriguing that I asked the most sophisticated collections lawyer in Southern California if it made any sense to him -- his answer was "almost none of it."

Posted by: Dave | Mar 9, 2011 2:45:44 PM

Who else is IRS going to steal from ? There are no jobs, more layoffs, more unemployment, and no more money to go around, oh and yea, that thing about jobs is just a political stunt. So again I ask, who else is IRS going to steal from to keep government thieves satisfied ? Is it time to press the "reset" button from the inception of the Constitution .. is that what it will take ??

Posted by: Tim | Mar 9, 2011 9:20:11 PM

Dave: All you've proven is that collections lawyers in Southern California are either stupid or too lazy to actually research the matter. Why don't both of you try that, instead of resorting to knee-jerk reactions? Read the IRC and the USC, for starters. You can tell your lawyer for me that if he's that ignorant, he should be out of a job.

Posted by: Big M | Mar 10, 2011 7:13:31 AM

They can only lien and/or levy on taxes due from title 27, alcohol, tobacco, and firearms or other excise taxes. Just look at the parallel table of authorities for cfr and USC. However I do believe there is a special tax on motion picture production but would have to look it up again. I think it is in title 26, either chapter D or E??

Posted by: Dennis | Mar 10, 2011 6:09:24 PM