United States v. Cardaci, No. 14-4237 (3d Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
District court has authority to consider whether tax debtor’s property should be subject to a forced sale. Cardaci owned Holly Construction. In 2000-2001, the business floundered; Cardaci used $49,600 in taxes withheld from his employees’ wages to pay suppliers and wages, including his $20,000 salary, rather than payroll taxes. Cardaci, now 58, has not had a regular income since 2009 and has medical problems. Beverly Cardaci, 62, earns $62,000 a year as a teacher. The Cardacis bought their Cape May County home in 1978; two adult children live with them part-time, without paying rent. The district court determined that the house has a fair market value of $150,500. It has no mortgage. The government sought to force its sale, to use half of the proceeds to pay Cardaci’s tax liability, with the remainder for Beverly. The court considered various equitable factors, declined to force the sale, fixed an imputed monthly rental value of $1,500 and ordered Cardaci to pay half of that to the IRS each month. Cardaci defaulted on his monthly payment obligation and failed to provide required proof of homeowner’s insurance. The Third Circuit remanded for recalculation of the factors weighing for and against a sale and for recalculation of the Cardacis’ respective interests in the property.