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U.S. Supreme Court

Blair v. Oesterlein Machine Co., 275 U.S. 220 (1927)

Blair v. Oesterlein Machine Company

No. 210

Argued October 10, 1927

Decided November 21, 1927

275 U.S. 220


1. The Board of Tax Appeals, in reviewing a refusal by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue to apply special assessment provisions of the Revenue Act of 1918, may subpoena the Commissioner to answer interrogatories and furnish information from returns of other taxpayers relevant to the inquiry. P. 275 U. S. 224.

2. The authority of the Board of Tax Appeals to review a determination of the Commissioner finding a deficiency in respect of a tax, Revenue Act, 1924, §§ 900(e), 273, 274, extends to determinations chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 275 U. S. 221

under §§ 327 and 328 of the Revenue Act of 1918, which provide for computation of the excess profits tax of a corporation, in certain cases, upon the basis of a comparison with tax returns of other corporate taxpayers similarly situated. P. 275 U. S. 226.

3. The Board's appellate powers are not limited by § 1018 of the Act, prohibiting the publication by Collectors of information gained in the course of their duties. P. 275 U. S. 227.

4. In his final determination of the taxpayer's taxes for 1918 and 1919, the Commissioner considered the returns for those years together, reduced the 1918 tax and increased the 1919 tax, and found the net balance as a deficiency. The question whether, under § 274, authorizing renew by the Board only of the Commissioner's determination of a " deficiency," the Board was empowered to consider his treatment of the 1918 tax was not raised before the Board or the court below and not specified in the petition for certiorari. Held, that it will not be considered by this Court. P. 275 U. S. 225.

17 F.2d 663 affirmed as modified.

Certiorari, 274 U.S. 730, to a decree of the Court of Appeals of the District of Columbia which affirmed a decree of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia commanding the Commissioner of Internal Revenue to respond to a subpoena of the Board of Tax Appeals.

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