Michael D. and Christine R. Alexander - Page 19

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          T.C. 695, 700 (1992).  It is well settled, however, that the                
          Commissioner cannot be estopped from correcting a mistake of law,           
          even where a taxpayer may have relied to his detriment on that              
          mistake.  Norfolk S. Corp. v. Commissioner, 104 T.C. 13, 59-60              
          (1995), affd. 140 F.3d 240 (4th Cir. 1998).  An exception exists            
          only in the rare case where a taxpayer can prove he or she would            
          suffer an unconscionable injury because of that reliance.  Id. at           
               The following conditions must be satisfied before equitable            
          estoppel will be applied against the Government:  (1) A false               
          representation or wrongful, misleading silence by the party                 
          against whom the opposing party seeks to invoke the doctrine; (2)           
          an error in a statement of fact and not in an opinion or                    
          statement of law; (3) ignorance of the true facts; (4) reasonable           
          reliance on the acts or statements of the one against whom                  
          estoppel is claimed; and (5) adverse effects of the acts or                 
          statement of the one against whom estoppel is claimed.  Id.  In             
          addition, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit requires the           
          party seeking to apply the doctrine against the Government to               
          prove affirmative misconduct.  Miller v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo.           
               Petitioners have not demonstrated affirmative misconduct by            
          respondent, nor have they established the other elements                    
          necessary for equitable estoppel to apply.  Accordingly,                    

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