Curtis B. Keene - Page 14

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          In turn, the administrative hearing provides the Appeals officer            
          with the opportunity to determine whether the Commissioner has              
          followed applicable laws and administrative procedures with                 
          regard to the assessment and collection action in dispute and to            
          develop a record with respect to issues raised by the taxpayer.             
          In short, the meeting between the taxpayer and the Appeals                  
          officer is face-to-face, private, arranged for the discussion of            
          specific matters, and formal in the sense that it is prescribed             
          by law.6  As previously indicated, these are all characteristics            
          of an “interview” as that term is commonly defined.                         
               Second, we reject the distinction that respondent seeks to             
          draw between what he describes as the inquisitorial nature of a             
          taxpayer interview by the Examination or Collection Division and            
          the voluntary nature of a section 6330 hearing before the Appeals           
          Office.  It is our view that the section 6330 hearing is an                 
          integral part of the tax collection process and therefore relates           
          to the “collection of any tax” within the meaning of section                
          7521(a)(1).  After all, the Commissioner generally may not                  
          collect a tax by levy or permit a notice of Federal tax lien to             
          remain on the public record without first offering the taxpayer             
          an administrative hearing pursuant to section 6330.  A taxpayer             
          who fails to participate in such a hearing may expect to receive            

               6  In contrast, the procedure involving the conduct of the             
          meeting is informal.  See Davis v. Commissioner, 115 T.C. 35, 41            
          (2000), where sec. 7521(a) was not considered.                              

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