Doreen Boyd - Page 6

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          all prerequisites to the act, such as conferences and review by             
          supervisors, have taken place.  See sec. 301.6404-2T(b)(1),                 
          Temporary Proced. & Admin. Regs., 52 Fed. Reg. 30163 (Aug. 13,              
               In enacting section 6404(e), Congress did not intend that              
          the abatement of interest provision “be used routinely to avoid             
          payment of interest” but be used in instances “where failure to             
          abate interest would be widely perceived as grossly unfair.”  H.            
          Rept. 99-426, at 844 (1985), 1986-3 C.B. (Vol. 2) 1, 844; S.                
          Rept. 99-313, at 208 (1986), 1986-3 C.B. (Vol. 3) 1, 208.                   
               The Commissioner's power to abate an assessment of interest            
          involves the exercise of discretion.  See Lee v. Commissioner,              
          113 T.C. 145 (1999).  Although we give the Commissioner's                   
          decision some deference, we have the authority to determine                 
          whether the Commissioner's failure to abate interest was an abuse           
          of discretion.  See sec. 6404(g); Lee v. Commissioner, supra.               
          The Court will direct the Commissioner to abate interest only if            
          the Commissioner exercised his discretion arbitrarily,                      
          capriciously, or without sound basis in fact or law.  See Woodral           
          v. Commissioner, supra.  Our review is limited to whether there             

          6  The final Treasury regulation under sec. 6404 was issued                 
          on Dec. 18, 1998.  The final regulation contains the same                   
          definition of ministerial act as the temporary regulation.  The             
          final regulation generally applies to interest accruing on                  
          deficiencies or payments of tax described in sec. 6212(a) for tax           
          years beginning after July 30, 1996.  See sec. 301.6404-2(b)(2),            
          Proced. & Admin. Regs.                                                      

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