Scheafnocker v. Comm'r Internal Revenue Serv., No. 08-2655 (3d Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
The taxpayer and her ex-husband maintained a joint account pending resolution of a support dispute. In May 2003 the IRS levied the funds because of the ex-husband's failure to turnover taxes withheld from his employees. The IRS did not notify the taxpayer and she did not learn of the levy until July 2004; she filed a claim for taxpayer assistance in August 2004, which was denied as untimely in January 2005. In March 2005, the taxpayer filed a petition for lien or levy with the tax court, which ultimately transferred the case. The district court dismissed. The Third Circuit vacated and remanded. Although her "wrongful levy" claims are not saved by the doctrine of equitable tolling, the taxpayer also raised a due process claim, based on lack of notice. Claims for damages are barred by sovereign immunity, but the taxpayer sought a procedural remedy, over which the district court did have jurisdiction (5 U.S.C. 702).