BEFORE THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION
XXXXX & XXXXX, )
Petitioners, ) FINDINGS OF FACT,
: CONCLUSIONS OF LAW,
v. ) AND FINAL DECISION
) Appeal No. 92-1615
OPERATIONS DIVISION OF THE :
UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION, )
: Account No. XXXXX
STATEMENT OF CASE
This matter came before the Utah State Tax Commission for a formal hearing on XXXXX. Lisa L. Olpin, Presiding Officer, heard the matter for and on behalf of the Commission. Petitioners were present and represented themselves. Present and representing the Respondent was XXXXX, Assistant Utah Attorney General.
Based upon the evidence and testimony presented at the hearing, the Tax Commission hereby makes its:
FINDINGS OF FACT
1. The tax in question is individual income tax.
2. The period in question is the year XXXXX.
3. Petitioners are requesting a refund of their XXXXX taxes in the amount of $$$$$. The Operations Division, however, contends that Petitioners are statutorily denied any refund as they failed to request it within the three year statute of limitations.
4. In this case, Petitioners pre-paid $$$$$ on their XXXXX taxes in XXXXX. They made this payment because they are retired and aware that without withholding credit there is an amount due in state individual income taxes in April of every year.
5. Petitioners concede that although they had their return prepared and ready to file for XXXXX they simply forgot to file it. Their son, a certified public accountant, had prepared their state return which requested a refund. (Petitioners did file their XXXXX federal individual income tax return on time.)
6. Petitioners speculate that they forgot about their XXXXX state tax return because they were out of the state serving a mission for their church.
7. In XXXXX, the Tax Commission notified Petitioners that it had not received a XXXXX individual income tax return from them. Petitioners then discovered their oversight and filed the return, requesting the refund which the Operations Division has denied.
8. Petitioners argue that it is unfair that the Tax Commission did not contact them before the statute of limitations ran, seemingly serving the Commission's own interest. Further, Petitioners feel that it is unjust that the Commission has more than three years to pursue non-filers whereas Petitioners have only three years to request a refund in a situation like this.
9. Petitioners have timely filed and paid their state individual income taxes for years.
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
A tax return must be filed by every resident individual who is required to file a federal income tax return for the taxable year. (Utah Code Ann. §59-10-502 (1).)
Further, "in other instances where a refund or credit of tax which has not been deducted and withheld from income is due, no credit or refund may be allowed or made after three years from the time the tax was paid, unless, before the expiration of the period, a claim is filed by the taxpayers or his legal representative." (Utah Code Ann.59-10-529(7)(b).)
DECISION AND ORDER
Based upon the foregoing, the Tax Commission finds that Petitioners are not entitled to a refund of taxes for the year XXXXX as they failed to file their return requesting the refund within the three year statute of limitations.
The Commission further explains that this same statute of limitations applies in cases where a taxpayer has filed a return and the state is seeking to assess additional taxes through an audit or other means. In other words, the Commission has only three years to pursue persons who have filed their returns.
In this case, Petitioners' oversight in forgetting to file on time and to assure that their affairs were in order has regrettably cost them.
The refund request on XXXXX individual income taxes is denied. It is so ordered.
DATED this 29th day of June, 1993.
BY ORDER OF THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION.
R. H. Hansen Roger O. Tew
Joe B. Pacheco S. Blaine Willes