Finally, the Department maintains that it did not provide the taxpayer with
erroneous written information or advice within the meaning of the Taxpayer’s Bill of
Rights. The Department notes that the taxpayer does not dispute the amount of the
assessments for any jurisdiction, and the taxpayer does not assert that the Department
erroneously advised it to overpay its tax liability. The Department claims that the
taxpayer did not rely on written information or advice from the Department in
determining its tax liability.
The Department’s arguments are persuasive. The Bill of Rights requires the
Department to “abate taxes and penalties assessed based upon erroneous written
information or advice given by the Department.” 20 ILCS 2520/4(c). First, the taxpayer
has not requested that the Department abate the taxes or a penalty. The taxpayer has
requested that the interest be abated, which is not referred to in the Bill of Rights. Also,
the Department did not provide the taxpayer with erroneous written information or advice
that resulted in an assessment. The assessment in this case resulted from a discrepancy in
the number of miles reported by the taxpayer, which was in part due to the taxpayer’s
failure to maintain trip sheets.
The taxpayer did not receive erroneous
information or advice from the Department that the taxpayer relied upon in preparing its
tax returns or making decisions concerning its tax liability.
The Department should not have to “bear the cost” of the second audit by paying
the interim interest to the taxpayer. Nothing in the Articles of Agreement provides a
basis for requiring the Department to pay the interim interest, and the taxpayer has not
From the stipulations it appears that the only error that occurred during the first audit was the use of the
wrong error factors. The taxpayer agreed to the use of these factors. (Ex. #5) Although the taxpayer states
that it did not in any way agree to “an improper audit” or waive any challenge to the audit, it still consented
to the use of the error factors that were the cause of the improper audit.