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IRS tries to dismiss lawsuit brought by Graves Garrett

Law360 recently reported that the Internal Revenue Service has filed a motion to dismiss a high-profile class action suit against it. Graves Garrett was the first to file the lawsuit against the IRS amid national controversy surrounding the agency’s inappropriate “targeting of conservative political groups for extra scrutiny as they sought tax-exempt status,” the Kansas City Star reported. 

Graves Garrett attorneys Edward D. Greim and Todd P. Graves are representing the Northern California Tea Party Patriots in the Southern District of Ohio asserting that the IRS violated the First and Fifth Amendments to the Constitution and the Privacy Act of 1974. In its motion to dismiss, the IRS told an Ohio federal judge that the groups do not have the authority to sue.

“We find it ironic that the very statutes that were enacted to stop misconduct are being used by the government to attempt to avoid liability,” Greim said.

The plaintiffs originally filed the suit in May 2013 and the IRS already sought to dismiss the case in September, according to the article on Law360. But the IRS maintains that the case must be dismissed, saying the federal Privacy Act claims included in the lawsuit only apply to individuals, not groups.

The complaint against the IRS, the Department of the Treasury and about 100 “John Does,” representing current and former IRS workers, accuses the defendants of “a muffling and muzzling of free expression.” 

The individual defendants will file motions and the plaintiff will respond to all of the motions in March, and oral argument will be held in Cincinnati in May, according to Greim.

Click here to read the full Law360 article.

Graves Garrett LLC represents businesses and individuals nationwide in commercial litigation, white collar criminal defense litigation and compliance and internal investigations. The firm is led by former U.S. Attorney Todd Graves and former federal prosecutor and FBI Special Agent Nathan Garrett. 

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