Paul L. Caron
Dean


Sunday, July 23, 2006

NY Times: IRS Pursuing "Back-Door Estate Tax Repeal" by Firing 45% of Its Estate Tax Lawyers?

Interesting article in today's New York Times:  I.R.S. to Cut Tax Auditors, by David Cay Johnston:

The federal government is moving to eliminate the jobs of nearly half of the lawyers at the Internal Revenue Service who audit tax returns of some of the wealthiest Americans, specifically those who are subject to gift and estate taxes when they transfer parts of their fortunes to their children and others. The administration plans to cut the jobs of 157 of the agency’s 345 estate tax lawyers, plus 17 support personnel, in less than 70 days. Kevin Brown, an IRS deputy commissioner, confirmed the cuts after The New York Times was given internal documents by people inside the IRS who oppose them.

The Bush administration has passed measures that reduce the number of Americans who are subject to the estate tax — which opponents refer to as the “death tax” — but has failed in its efforts to eliminate the tax entirely. Mr. Brown said in a telephone interview Friday that he had ordered the staff cuts because far fewer people were obliged to pay estate taxes under President Bush’s legislation. But six IRS estate tax lawyers whose jobs are likely to be eliminated said in interviews that the cuts were just the latest moves behind the scenes at the IRS to shield people with political connections and complex tax-avoidance devices from thorough audits. Sharyn Phillips, a veteran IRS estate tax lawyer in Manhattan, called the cuts a “back-door way for the Bush administration to achieve what it cannot get from Congress, which is repeal of the estate tax.”

Update:

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2006/07/ny_times_irs_pu.html

IRS News | Permalink

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Tracked on Jul 25, 2006 8:33:17 AM

Comments

These are wackey Sales tax laws posted on NYS tax web-site. How do they excpect to collect on these?

You buy furniture in Massachusetts and you bring it back to New York State to use in your residence.
- You take your stereo equipment to Connecticut to be repaired, after it has been fixed, you bring it back to New York to use in your residence.
- You order a bedspread over the Internet from a vendor located in Georgia and it is delivered by mail to your residence in New York State.
- You send your watch to a repair shop in Pennsylvania to be repaired. The repaired watch is returned by mail to your residence in New York State.
- You purchase a piece of jewelry and pay sales tax in a locality in New York State at a lower tax rate than the rate in the locality where you live. When you bring the jewelry back to the locality where you live, you will owe tax for the difference between the rate in the locality where you live and the rate in the locality where you purchased the jewelry and paid sales tax.
- You pick up your radio that you had repaired in a locality in New York State with a lower sales tax rate than the rate for the locality in which you live. You will owe tax for the difference between the rate in the locality where you live and the rate in the locality where you had the radio repaired.

Posted by: TC | Jul 27, 2006 6:47:33 PM