Thursday, July 24, 2014
Robin L. Greenhouse, Michael Kelleher & Randy Herndon (all of McDermott Will & Emery, Washington, D.C.), District Court Opinion Guts Work Product Protection for Tax Opinions, 144 Tax Notes 329 (July 21, 2014):
With implications that should alarm tax controversy practitioners and their clients, in Schaeffler v. United States the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York denied a taxpayer’s petition to quash an IRS summons for a tax opinion issued by an accounting firm. The court’s finding that the tax opinion was not entitled to work product protection significantly undermines the application of that doctrine. Although the court denied the petition to quash, it later granted the taxpayer’s motion to stay enforcement of the summons pending appeal to the Second Circuit.