tax protester

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English[edit]

Noun[edit]

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tax protester (plural tax protesters)

  1. (law) In the United States, a person who denies the obligation to pay a tax for which the government has determined that person is liable, based on a belief that the government lacks the legal authority to impose taxes.
    • Hattman v. Commissioner, NO. 05-1376 (3d Cir. 2005) (per curiam):
      It is readily apparent that Hattman's appeal and "petitions" in this Court, as well as his petition for redetermination filed in the Tax Court, are nothing other than the thinly veiled arguments of a tax protester. These types of tax protester arguments have been rejected as patently frivolous, and require no additional analysis here.
    • Coleman v. Commissioner, 791 F.2d 68, 69 (7th Cir. 1986):
      Some people believe with great fervor preposterous things that just happen to coincide with their self-interest. Tax protesters have convinced themselves that wages are not income, that only gold is money, that the Sixteenth Amendment is unconstitutional, and so on. These beliefs all lead--so tax protesters think--to the elimination of their obligation to pay taxes.

Usage notes[edit]

The use of the phrase is considered somewhat derogatory by many against whom it is applied, particularly in light of courts and executive branch agencies associating the term with persons who raise arguments that have been deemed frivolous, or which assert massive government conspiracies to assess illegal taxes. In 2008, the government began using the term "tax defiers" to refer to tax protesters.

See also[edit]