Estate of Edward Wenner - Page 6
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matter, independent of any deficiency proceeding. See Fernandez
v. Commissioner, 114 T.C. 324 (2000).
The essence of Ms. Clark’s argument is that she is entitled
to raise her entitlement to section 6015 relief as an affirmative
defense in a section 6404 action. Ms. Clark asserts that there
is sufficient jurisdictional predicate for this Court to
determine her substantive claim. Historically we have
characterized a claim for relief from joint liability as an
affirmative defense that must be set forth in the pleadings. See
Butler v. Commissioner, supra at 287-288.
In Neely v. Commissioner, 115 T.C. 287 (2000), an analogous
case, we held that we had jurisdiction to decide an affirmative
defense raised by the petitioner in a section 7436 case
(Proceedings for Determination of Employment Status). Section
7436, like section 6404, allows judicial review of a
determination of the respondent. In that case we reasoned:
The statute of limitations set forth in section 6501
constitutes a defense at bar (i.e., an affirmative
defense) that may be raised by the taxpayer in response
to a determination made by the Commissioner. See Rule
39; Genesis Oil & Gas, Ltd. v. Commissioner, [93 T.C.
562 (1989)] supra at 564. Once our jurisdiction has
been properly invoked in a case, we require no
additional jurisdiction to render a decision with
respect to such an affirmative defense. See Genesis Oil
& Gas, Ltd. v. Commissioner, supra at 564. Rather,
“When such a defense in bar is properly raised, we must
pass upon the merits of the issue after receiving
evidence with respect thereto”. Badger Materials, Inc.
v. Commissioner, [40 T.C. 1061 (1963)] supra at 1063.
Accordingly, we hold that where the parties are
properly before the Court in an action brought under
section 7436, the Court possesses jurisdiction to
address issues relating to the period of limitations
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