Charles H. Little III - Page 7

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               As noted earlier, petitioner had not filed a Federal income            
          tax return at the time the notice of deficiency was issued.                 
          Therefore, respondent’s burden of production was met as to the              
          section 6651(a)(1) addition to tax.                                         
               Section 6651(a)(1) provides for an addition to tax for                 
          failure to file a Federal income tax return.  This addition to              
          tax is not imposed if the failure to file is not due to “willful            
          neglect” and is “due to reasonable cause”.  The term “willful               
          neglect” has been interpreted to mean a conscious, intentional              
          failure or reckless indifference.  United States v. Boyle, 469              
          U.S. 241, 245 (1985).  “Reasonable cause” requires the taxpayer             
          to demonstrate that he exercised ordinary business care and                 
          prudence and was nonetheless unable to file the return timely.              
          Fambrough v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 1990-104.  Petitioner’s               
          situation here, at best, can be considered reckless indifference.           
          Even though petitioner and his wife were experiencing a stressful           
          situation lingering from the untimely death of their daughter and           
          the illness of their granddaughter, petitioner nonetheless                  
          pursued gainful employment during the tax year at issue.  These             
          personal problems, although serious, did not prevent petitioner             
          from engaging in his business activity and in earning substantial           
          income.  Since these personal problems did not impair                       
          petitioner’s ability to pursue gainful employment, they likewise            
          should not have impaired petitioner’s duty to file a timely                 

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