TEI’s Legal Staff needs your help evaluating the frequency of troubling LB&I tactics in Appeals cases

We are aware of a few recent cases in which LB&I examination teams pursued troubling tactics in cases involving the IRS Independent Office of Appeals. We need your help determining if these are isolated incidents or systemic issues that need to be addressed with IRS leadership. The first tactic involves proposed audit adjustments where oral testimony is needed to complete the factual record before transferring a case to Appeals (e.g., proposed changes to a transfer pricing method or research credit disputes involving the process of experimentation). Certain Exam teams have affirmatively refused to participate in interviews of taxpayer personnel with knowledge of pertinent facts not otherwise discernable through documents when it was apparent that the interviews could provide facts contrary to the Exam team’s position. The other tactic involves Exam teams that raise new issues in rebuttals filed in response to taxpayer protests, particularly where the issue has been thoroughly audited, is the subject of a detailed Notice of Proposed Adjustment, and the new rebuttal position requires the taxpayer to introduce new facts to dispute it.  Please contact Patrick Evans on pevans@tei.org or 202-464-8351 if you have experienced either of these two tactics in your LB&I examinations. We are eager to pursue remedial rule changes with Appeals if necessary to ensure a level playing field.