Robert A. and M. Faye Strang - Page 4

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               Petitioners filed a timely petition for review of                      
          respondent’s denial of their request for abatement of interest.             
          The following is the centerpiece of petitioners’ argument:  “From           
          my experience the average amount of time required for an audit is           
          from three to six months after the agent has started the case.”             
          Since the examination process took more than 6 months,                      
          petitioners assert that respondent unduly delayed the process.              
               Respondent contends that he did not abuse his discretion in            
          denying petitioners’ request.  Further, respondent argues that              
          petitioners have not established that there was an error or delay           
          as a result of a ministerial act.                                           
               Section 6404(g) (redesignated as subsection 6404(i)),                  
          enacted by section 302(a) of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights 2                  
          (TBOR2), Pub. L. 104-168, 110 Stat. 1457 (1996), provides the Tax           
          Court with authority to review the Commissioner’s denial of a               
          taxpayer’s request for abatement of interest.  This Court may               
          order an abatement where the Commissioner’s failure to abate                
          interest was an abuse of discretion.  See sec. 6404(g).  The                
          taxpayer must demonstrate that the Commissioner, in failing to              
          abate interest, exercised his discretion arbitrarily,                       
          capriciously, or without sound basis in law or fact.  See Krugman           
          v. Commissioner, 112 T.C. 230, 239 (1999); Woodral v.                       
          Commissioner, 112 T.C. 19, 23 (1999).                                       

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