Internal Revenue Bulletin:  2009-5 

February 2, 2009 

Announcement of Disciplinary Sanctions From the Office of Professional Responsibility


Table of Contents

The Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) announces recent disciplinary sanctions involving attorneys, certified public accountants, enrolled agents, enrolled actuaries, enrolled retirement plan agents, and appraisers. These individuals are subject to the regulations governing practice before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which are set out in Title 31, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 10, and which are published in pamphlet form as Treasury Department Circular No. 230. The regulations prescribe the duties and restrictions relating to such practice and prescribe the disciplinary sanctions for violating the regulations.

The disciplinary sanctions to be imposed for violation of the regulations are:

Disbarred from practice before the IRS—An individual who is disbarred is not eligible to represent taxpayers before the IRS.

Suspended from practice before the IRS—An individual who is suspended is not eligible to represent taxpayers before the IRS during the term of the suspension.

Censured in practice before the IRS—Censure is a public reprimand. Unlike disbarment or suspension, censure does not affect an individual’s eligibility to represent taxpayers before the IRS, but OPR may subject the individual’s future representations to conditions designed to promote high standards of conduct.

Monetary penalty—A monetary penalty may be imposed on an individual who engages in conduct subject to sanction or on an employer, firm, or entity if the individual was acting on its behalf and if it knew, or reasonably should have known, of the individual’s conduct.

Disqualification of appraiser—An appraiser who is disqualified is barred from presenting evidence or testimony in any administrative proceeding before the Department of the Treasury or the IRS.

Under the regulations, attorneys, certified public accountants, enrolled agents, enrolled actuaries, and enrolled retirement plan agents may not assist, or accept assistance from, individuals who are suspended or disbarred with respect to matters constituting practice (i.e., representation) before the IRS, and they may not aid or abet suspended or disbarred individuals to practice before the IRS.

Disciplinary sanctions are described in these terms:

Disbarred by decision after hearing, Suspended by decision after hearing, Censured by decision after hearing, Monetary penalty imposed after hearing, and Disqualified after hearing—An administrative law judge (ALJ) conducted an evidentiary hearing upon OPR’s complaint alleging violation of the regulations and issued a decision imposing one of these sanctions. After 30 days from the issuance of the decision, in the absence of an appeal, the ALJ’s decision became the final agency decision.

Disbarred by default decision, Suspended by default decision, Censured by default decision, Monetary penalty imposed by default decision, and Disqualified by default decision—An ALJ, after finding that no answer to OPR’s complaint had been filed, granted OPR’s motion for a default judgment and issued a decision imposing one of these sanctions.

Disbarment by decision on appeal, Suspended by decision on appeal, Censured by decision on appeal, Monetary penalty imposed by decision on appeal, and Disqualified by decision on appeal—The decision of the ALJ was appealed to the agency appeal authority, acting as the delegate of the Secretary of the Treasury, and the appeal authority issued a decision imposing one of these sanctions.

Disbarred by consent, Suspended by consent, Censured by consent, Monetary penalty imposed by consent, and Disqualified by consent—In lieu of a disciplinary proceeding being instituted or continued, an individual offered a consent to one of these sanctions and OPR accepted the offer. Typically, an offer of consent will provide for: suspension for an indefinite term; conditions that the individual must observe during the suspension; and the individual’s opportunity, after a stated number of months, to file with OPR a petition for reinstatement affirming compliance with the terms of the consent and affirming current eligibility to practice (i.e., an active professional license or active enrollment status). An enrolled agent or an enrolled retirement plan agent may also offer to resign in order to avoid a disciplinary proceeding.

Suspended by decision in expedited proceeding, Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding, Suspended by consent in expedited proceeding—OPR instituted an expedited proceeding for suspension (based on certain limited grounds, including loss of a professional license and criminal convictions).

OPR has authority to disclose the grounds for disciplinary sanctions in these situations: (1) an ALJ or the Secretary’s delegate on appeal has issued a decision on or after September 26, 2007, which was the effective date of amendments to the regulations that permit making such decisions publicly available; (2) the individual has settled a disciplinary case by signing OPR’s “consent to sanction” form, which requires consenting individuals to admit to one or more violations of the regulations and to consent to the disclosure of the individual’s own return information related to the admitted violations (for example, failure to file Federal income tax returns); or (3) OPR has issued a decision in an expedited proceeding for suspension.

Announcements of disciplinary sanctions appear in the Internal Revenue Bulletin at the earliest practicable date. The sanctions announced below are alphabetized first by the names of states and second by the last names of individuals. Unless otherwise indicated, section numbers (e.g., § 10.51) refer to the regulations.

City and State Name Professional Designation Disciplinary Sanction Effective Date(s)
Alabama        
  Florence Bowlin, Donald W. CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (revocation of CPA license) Indefinite from December 1, 2008
Arizona        
  Scottsdale Cifelli, Thomas A. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from December 3, 2008
  Phoenix Groh, Gregory G. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from December 1, 2008
  Chandler Huynh, Hoang V. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from November 5, 2008
  Payson Johnson, Richard B. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from December 5, 2008
  Mesa Matheny, Ronald S. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from December 1, 2008
  Phoenix Olson, Carl R. CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (revocation of CPA license in Kansas) Indefinite from December 15, 2008
  Dewey Wirth, Andrew T. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment) Indefinite from December 3, 2008
California        
  Ventura Hartnett, John G. Attorney Suspended by decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license in Massachusetts) Indefinite from December 11, 2008
Colorado        
  Englewood Simon, Harry L. Attorney Suspended by decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from November 5, 2008
Illinois        
  Northbrook Kipnis, Mark S. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (conviction under 18 U.S.C. §§ 1341 and 1346, frauds and swindles) Indefinite from December 4, 2008
  Waukegan Meuth, Patterson C. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment) Indefinite from December 4, 2008
Kansas        
  Emporia Markowitz, Daniel J. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment in Missouri) Indefinite from December 17, 2008
  Olson, Carl R., See Arizona      
  Overland Park Stewart, Kimberly CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (revocation of CPA license) Indefinite from December 15, 2008
Kentucky        
  Louisville Brooks, Troy L. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment in Tennessee) Indefinite from December 9, 2008
Louisiana        
  Lafayette Peddy, Jr., Millard C. CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (revocation of CPA license) Indefinite from December 17, 2008
Massachusetts        
  East Walpole Brauer, David P. Attorney Suspended by decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from December 11, 2008
  Hartnett, John G., See California      
Minnesota        
  Varriano, Richard D., See North Dakota      
Mississippi        
  Jackson McIntyre, James G. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment) Indefinite from December 17, 2008
  Oxford Scruggs, Richard F. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment) Indefinite from December 17, 2008
Missouri        
  Kirkwood Belz, Mark Attorney Suspended by decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from December 12, 2008
  Markowitz, Daniel J., See Kansas      
New York        
  New York Lefrak, Joseph S. Attorney Suspended by decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment) Indefinite from November 12, 2008
  Dix Hills Napolitano, James P. CPA Suspended by ALJ default decision for violation of § 10.51 (failure to exercise due diligence in representations to client) Indefinite from September 23, 2008
North Carolina        
  Raleigh McLamb, Jr., James O. CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (revocation of CPA license) Indefinite from December 17, 2008
North Dakota        
  Fargo Varriano, Richard D. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney suspension in Minnesota) Indefinite from December 9, 2008
Oklahoma        
  Bethany Farrow, Katherine L. CPA Suspended by consent for violation of § 10.51 (failure to timely file Federal income tax returns) Indefinite from November 1, 2008
Oregon        
  Sandy Ryan, Jane D. CPA Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (conviction under State of Oregon law 164.055, theft in the first degree) Indefinite from December 9, 2008
Tennessee        
  Brooks, Troy L., See Kentucky      
  Martin Speight, Harry M. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment) Indefinite from December 15, 2008
  Greenville Welch, Lawrence A. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney disbarment) Indefinite from December 9, 2008
Virginia        
  Ashburn Askintowicz, John W. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (attorney license annulled in West Virginia) Indefinite from December 15, 2008
West Virginia        
  Askintowicz, John W., See Virginia      
Wisconsin        
  Ripon Goluba, David A. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (suspension of attorney license) Indefinite from December 9, 2008
  Racine Shumate, Thomas M. Attorney Suspended by default decision in expedited proceeding under § 10.82 (conviction under 26 U.S.C. § 7212, corruptly impeding the administration of the IRS laws) Indefinite from December 1, 2008

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