Robert L. Beck - Page 24

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          legally impaired (as a result of mental illness, traumatic                  
          epilepsy, and brain damage) from comprehending or understanding             
          the nature and requirements of the Internal Revenue Code.”                  
               A taxpayer’s mental incapacity may constitute “reasonable              
          cause” for failure to file returns.  Bloch v. Commissioner, T.C.            
          Memo. 1992-1.  Judging by Mrs. Beck’s demeanor at trial and her             
          testimony, which was lucid and coherent, displaying at most                 
          naivety and poor judgment rather than mental incompetence, and in           
          the absence of any medical evidence to the contrary,13 we are               
          unconvinced that Mrs. Beck was so mentally impaired that she                
          could not appreciate her legal duty to file returns and pay                 
          taxes, particularly during the years in issue, when she was                 
          actively engaged in the conduct of Dr. Beck’s dental practice.              
               Mrs. Beck has not established that she had reasonable cause            
          for her failure to file timely returns.  Accordingly, Mrs. Beck             
          is liable for the section 6651(a)(1) addition to tax for each               
          year in issue.                                                              

               13 At trial, the Court admitted into evidence, over                    
          respondent’s objections, a letter that Dr. Beck alleged was sent            
          to respondent’s auditing agent, which Dr. Beck alleged to contain           
          medical reports regarding Mrs. Beck’s “emotional instability and            
          sensitivity.”  After trial, it was discovered that Dr. Beck had             
          failed to relinquish to the Court this exhibit and other exhibits           
          that he had proffered and that had been marked for                          
          identification.  On Nov. 1, 1999, and Nov. 3, 1999, the Court’s             
          trial clerk contacted Dr. Beck and requested that he return the             
          exhibits to complete the record in this case.  After receiving no           
          response, on Feb. 9, 2000, the Court ordered the missing exhibits           
          stricken from the record of these cases.                                    

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