86-0287 - Income

BEFORE THE STATE TAX COMMISSION OF UTAH

_____________________________________

XXXXX,                                                                                 )

                                                                                    :

            Petitioner,                                                         )

                                                                                    :

v.                                                                                 )           INFORMAL DECISION

                                                                                    :

                                                                                    )

COLLECTION DIVISION OF THE                          :           Appeal No. 86 0287

STATE TAX COMMISSION OF UTAH,                  )           Acct. No. XXXXX

                                                                                    :

            Respondent.                                                     )

_____________________________________

STATEMENT OF CASE

            This is an appeal to the Utah State Tax Commission from a decision of the Collection Division of the Utah State Tax Commission (Respondent) to assess penalty and interest on individual income tax account No. XXXXX for the first two quarters of XXXXX.  An Informal Hearing was held on XXXXX, in the offices of the Utah State Tax Commission.  David J. Angerhofer, Hearing Officer, heard the matter for the Commission.  XXXXX represented the Petitioner.

            XXXXX was acquired by XXXXX in XXXXX.  Petitioner stated that, at the time of the acquisition, XXXXX was insolvent and had a deficit net worth of $$$$$, based on an audit report from a local accounting firm which Petitioner had hired to investigate the company.  Once the Petitioner acquired XXXXX, Petitioner invested an initial $$$$$ to settle all liabilities, including taxes.

            Subsequent to the acquisition, Petitioner found that the payroll and tax records of XXXXX were in error.  Petitioner had to redo almost every tax report.  The incorrect tax returns had resulted in penalties.  Petitioner paid the Utah taxes on XXXXX, but erroneously overpaid when it declared all state taxes (including California, Colorado and Idaho) to Utah. Petitioner asserts that this should be a mitigating factor.

            Petitioner presented evidence that the Internal Revenue Service had rendered relief from the penalties which it imposed for the same circumstances and requests that the Tax Commission also waive the penalty and interest. Petitioner notes that, had it not assumed XXXXX, back taxes would not have been paid and twenty Utah employees would have lost their jobs since XXXXX would have gone bankrupt.

FINDINGS

            The tax due for the first quarter of XXXXX was $$$$$.  Respondent assessed a penalty of $$$$$ and interest of $$$$$ as of XXXXX. The tax due for the second quarter of XXXXX was $$$$$.  Respondent assessed a penalty of $$$$$ and interest of $$$$$ as of XXXXX.

            By acquiring XXXXX, XXXXX became liable for all debts including taxes, penalty and interest.  Petitioner properly employed a local accounting firm to audit the books of XXXXX, in order that Petitioner might have a true understanding of the financial condition of XXXXX.  Petitioner chose the accounting firm and is responsible for the consequences of their audit report.  If the Petitioner feels that the audit report was deficient and that Petitioner did not receive a true and accurate report of XXXXX's financial condition including the status of its taxes, then this is a matter which is best resolved between Petitioner and the accounting firm.  The Tax Commission is not in a position to protect Petitioner from the consequences of its business decisions.

DECISION AND ORDER

            It is the Decision and Order of the Utah State Tax Commission that Petitioner's request for waiver of penalty and interest on individual income tax account No. XXXXX for the first and second quarters of XXXXX be denied.

            The assessment of penalty and interest by the Collection Division of the Utah State Tax Commission is hereby affirmed.

            DATED this 1 day of December, 1986.

BY ORDER OF THE STATE TAX COMMISSION OF UTAH.

R. H. Hansen                                                                Roger O. Tew

Chairman                                                                      Commissioner

Joe B. Pacheco                                                            G. Blaine Davis

Commissioner   Commissioner