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Kevin Spencer focuses his practice on tax controversy issues. Kevin represents clients in complicated tax disputes in court and before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) at the IRS Appeals and Examination divisions. In addition to his tax controversy practice, Kevin has broad experience advising clients on various tax issues, including tax accounting, employment and reasonable compensation, civil and criminal tax penalties, IRS procedures, reportable transactions and tax shelters, renewable energy, state and local tax, and private client matters. After earning his Master of Tax degree, Kevin had the privilege to clerk for the Honorable Robert P. Ruwe on the US Tax Court. Read Kevin Spencer's full bio.

Does Latest IRS Guidance Signal New Firm Stance on Research Credit Refund Claims?


By and on Oct 19, 2021
Posted In IRS Guidance, Tax Refunds

On October 15, 2021, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued a press release related to required information for valid research credit refund claims. The press release contains a link to a memorandum by two IRS employees, which will be used to evaluate such claims, and states that there will be a grace period (until January...

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IRS Provides Guidance on Reliance of FAQs for Penalty Protection Purposes


By and on Oct 18, 2021
Posted In IRS Guidance

On October 15, 2021, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued a news release and fact sheet for IRS Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), which are typically posted on the IRS’s website. The purpose of the fact sheet is to confirm and explain the extent to which FAQs can be relied upon for purposes of avoiding civil...

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Supreme Court Grants Certiorari in One Tax Case, Denies it in Several Others


By and on Oct 6, 2021
Posted In Appellate Courts, Court Procedure Matters, Trial Courts

Historically, the Supreme Court of the United States rarely grants petitions for certiorari in tax cases, and it appears this trend continues in the current term. On September 30, 2021, the Supreme Court granted the petition for certiorari in Boechler, P.C. v. Commissioner. The case presents the question of whether Internal Revenue Code Section 6330(d)(1),...

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District Court Broadly Interprets Informal Claim Doctrine


By and on Oct 5, 2021
Posted In Court Procedure Matters, Tax Refunds, Trial Courts

Internal Revenue Code (Code) section 7803(a)(3)(C) provides that taxpayers have “the right to pay no more than the correct amount of tax.” However, there are two relevant considerations to this “right.” First, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) must take the appropriate steps before it can assess and collect any amount of tax beyond that reported...

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Show Me the Money: IRS Introduces Webpage for Large Refunds Subject to JCT Review


By and on Sep 23, 2021
Posted In IRS Audits, IRS Guidance, Tax Refunds

When we previously wrote about the Joint Committee on Taxation’s (JCT) process for reviewing refund claims granted by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), we explained that the IRS generally must submit proposed refunds in excess of $5 million for corporate taxpayers and $2 million for all other taxpayers to the JCT before any such refunds...

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The Results are in: IRS Appeals Retains Discretion to Continue to Allow Exam Teams and Chief Counsel to Attend Conferences


By and on Sep 14, 2021
Posted In IRS Appeals

The IRS Independent Office of Appeals (IRS Appeals, Appeals) has seen many changes over the past several years. One of the more controversial and publicized change related to the 2017 pilot program to test whether inviting Large Business & International (LB&I) exam teams and Chief Counsel attorneys to engage with taxpayers and their representatives at...

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IRS Acknowledges Limitations on Use of Outside Contractors in Audits


By , and on Sep 10, 2021
Posted In IRS Audits, IRS Guidance, Trial Courts

Several years ago, it came to light that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) had hired a law firm to assist with transfer pricing matters in an ongoing audit of a large corporate taxpayer. Contemporaneous with that hiring, the IRS issued temporary regulations providing that third-party contractors “may receive books, papers, records, or other data summoned...

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IRS Releases Fact Sheet on Acceptable Electronic Signatures


By , and on Sep 9, 2021
Posted In IRS Guidance

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released a fact sheet, providing guidance on acceptable methods for taxpayers to electronically or digitally sign certain paper forms that they cannot file electronically. In order to provide taxpayers with greater flexibility during the COVID-19 pandemic, the IRS previously announced taxpayers may use digital signatures for certain forms through the...

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What are the Time Limits for Assessing Additional Federal Tax and Filing a Refund Claim?


By and on Sep 3, 2021
Posted In IRS Audits, IRS Guidance, Tax Reform, Tax Refunds

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) must follow the “statute of limitations” as stated in Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 6501 to “assess” additional federal tax. Likewise, taxpayers must seek a tax overpayment or refund within the statutory period stated in IRC Section 6511. In this article, we’ll answer some of the most common questions regarding...

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Key Takeaways | Cryptocurrency Global Tax Enforcement: What Investors and Companies in the Industry Need to Know NOW


By , , , and on Jul 27, 2021
Posted In IRS Guidance, Tax Reform

During a recent program discussing the latest government enforcement efforts related to cryptocurrency, we spoke with Gary Alford, one of the leading Internal Revenue Service (IRS) agents in their crypto enforcement efforts, Perry Carbone, Chief of the White Plains Office (US Attorney’s Office – SDNY) and Andy Cole, former Director of Specialist Investigations at HM...

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