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Prudential Security, Inc. v. United States

United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division

July 2, 2019

PRUDENTIAL SECURITY, INC., Plaintiff,
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Defendant.

          Anthony P. Patti, Magistrate Judge

          ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS (ECF No. 10)

          VICTORIA A. ROBERTS, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Prudential Security, Inc. filed this action against the United States of America, requesting that the Court order an abatement of certain tax penalties that the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) inadvertently assessed against Prudential; Prudential also seeks an injunction against different, newly issued assessments.

         The IRS did abate the inadvertently assessed penalties, mooting Prudential's first request.

         With respect to the remaining assessments, the Anti-Injunction Act bars Prudential's claim; Prudential cannot demonstrate that it would suffer irreparable injury or that it otherwise lacks an adequate legal remedy.

         The Government's motion to dismiss is GRANTED.

         II. BACKGROUND

         Prudential is a Michigan corporation providing security services. The IRS inadvertently assessed tax penalties against Prudential for the 2014 and 2015 calendar years; the penalties were assessed under 26 U.S.C. § 6721 for failing to file forms 8300 and under 26 U.S.C. § 6685 for failing to make certain tax returns available for public inspection as required by 26 U.S.C. § 6104(d). The IRS acknowledged that those penalties were inadvertently assessed and abated them.

         The IRS has now assessed what it considers to be the correct penalties against Prudential for its alleged failure to furnish W-2's to its employees in 2014 and 2015. Prudential says the IRS knows that it did furnish W-2's to its employees for the years in question; it says the IRS has copies of the W-2's and received sworn declarations that the W-2's were distributed. Prudential claims that the IRS is “harassing the Plaintiff by assessing and threatening to assess bogus penalties in large amounts in order to destroy Plaintiff's credit and business reputation.” Prudential seeks injunctive relief. The Government seeks dismissal.

         III. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         Under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a party may assert as a defense, that the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over the claims. Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(1). “When subject matter jurisdiction is challenged under Rule 12(b)(1), the plaintiff has the burden of proving jurisdiction in order to survive the motion.” Madison-Hughes v. Shalala, 80 F.3d 1121, 1130 (6th Cir. 1996).

         Motions to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction fall into two general categories: facial attacks and factual attacks. United States v. Ritchie, 15 F.3d 592, 598 (6th Cir. 1994). A factual attack is a challenge to the factual existence of subject matter jurisdiction. Id. at 598. When considering a factual attack, the Court is free to weigh the evidence and satisfy itself concerning the existence of its power to hear the case. Id. In matters regarding subject matter jurisdiction, the court may look to evidence outside the pleadings. Nichols v. Muskingum College, 318 F.3d 674, 677 (6th Cir. 2003).

         IV. ...


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