Bass, Berry & Sims attorneys Mike Sontag, Steve Jasper, and Michael Cottone authored an article for State Tax Notes regarding what taxpayers need to know about state revenue department guidance. They examine the different types of guidance, the degree to which taxpayers may rely on that guidance, and different methods for challenging it.  Taxpayers need to know when they can rely on departmental guidance for planning purposes, and taxpayers negatively impacted by guidance need to know whether and how they can challenge the department’s position.  A taxpayer seeking to depart from guidance issued by a revenue department can generally choose between filing a return based on a good-faith legal position contrary to the guidance or filing and paying tax in line with the guidance and seeking a refund.  As the authors point out, choosing between these options “requires consideration of numerous factors,” and “the correct course will depend on the circumstances.”

The full article, “Says Who? Knowing When A Department’s Guidance is Binding,” was published by State Tax Notes on December 24, 2018, and is available online (subscription required).