Petaluma Takes a Bizarre Turn
Bloomberg BNA Tax Insights (July 2015)
6 Pages Posted: 17 Jul 2015 Last revised: 1 Oct 2015
Date Written: July 16, 2015
Petaluma FX v. Commissioner, a case involving some complex tax procedure issues, has gone on for nearly a decade and has made three trips to the D.C. Circuit. The strangest twist seemingly occurred in 2012 when, in a case involving similar issues, the Tax Court performed a “reverse benchslap” on the D.C. Circuit, allegedly flouting the court’s first opinion in Petaluma.
However, things have managed to get even stranger. In its most recent opinion, the D.C. Circuit rejected the views of both parties and decided the case through a strange reading of a regulation's effective-date provision. This short article discusses the problems with the court's analysis and its potential implications for some broader administrative law questions.
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