Misc RM 33 Misc reference material Part 1
Reference Material - For Information Only!
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Rivera on the Legal Duty to Make a Return
Re: Duty to make 1040 returns Conclusion: that you have no legal duty to make a 1040 return
You have asked if you have a legal obligation to make a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. This is the most important, but seldom asked, question in personal income taxation, for without a legal obligation to make a return or list of taxable income no mandatory tax assessment; tax liability or tax payment obligation is possible. Indeed, the legislative imposition in a free society of a legal duty to make a return listing all income always creates an unconstitutional direct tax. To be legal and constitutional an income tax must be free of a legal duty to make a return or the income taxed must be generated by an activity subject to legislative power.
The question, if a legal duty exists to make a return, is rarely asked of mainstream tax professionals because it is assumed by them that everyone with a minimum amount of income has gross income and, therefore, has a corresponding obligation to make and file a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. But, the assumption that everyone can have taxable gross income is wrong. Gross income is exclusive to members of Congress and the inferior federal judges. It is the assumption of a universal lawful and constitutional income tax on the people that has created the federal income tax we all know and hate.
The reality is that the Congress of the United States has only created the federal income tax within its power to create. The only income Congress has legislative power over is that of members of Congress and the inferior federal judges that are part of the legislative branch of the federal government and that is the gross income upon which the tax falls. Conscientious citizen members of society have been taught to believe that Congress has legislative power over their income.
While this belief is very democratic, it is just not true. I am constantly asked the "legal duty" question because everyone who asks considers me to be in the "alternative" to the mainstream legal practitioner of law. My opinions on the law are sought out because those opinions are based on painstaking legal research and not mere agreement with popularly held beliefs. I am expected to provide multiple explanations because I have examined the subject from every angle and my opinions of the law are unconventional.
Though out of the mainstream, my opinions are always correct. Shortly after enactment of the 1913 federal income tax, attorneys preparing handbooks on the new tax made the now common assumption that the federal income tax is simply a tax on all non-exempt income in a minimal amount. Those early tax attorney practitioners failed to understand that Congress could only levy a tax on income over which it had legislative power. Then as now that taxable income was the incomes of members of Congress and the inferior federal judges. If asked members of Congress and the inferior federal judges will not deny that they have a duty to make income tax returns but neither do they inform the people that they do not and cannot have such an obligation.
As members of the legislative branch, members of Congress and most of the inferior federal judges have absolutely no government authority to tell any other person the law. To further confirm that the federal income tax is legislative obligation, the United States Tax Court is established as an Article I court. Today's inadequately prepared and trained tax professionals parrot what they are familiar with and what they have been taught the federal income tax is a general tax on everyone's income. An assumption is not evidence or proof and that is what your questions seeks evidence or proof of your obligation. You want to know who has a legal duty to make a federal income tax return and you want to know why. Too often assumptions are so widely accepted as to lose their important character as something assumed.
The assumption that everyone has a legal duty to make an income tax return is so widespread that such an assumption is now supported by other assumptions. The confirmation of federal income taxation by the non-judicial, non-Article III, territorial, administrative federal courts is deemed sufficient by all mainstream authorities. You have wisely sought my opinion because you recognize that the opinions of other tax professionals are assumptions or are assumptions based on assumptions. You members of Congress and inferior federal judges have a legal duty to make U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns.
This opinion letter will explain my conclusion that only members of Congress and the inferior federal judges have a legal duty to make and file U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns. This conclusion is based on facts, any one of which may fully explain, why you have no legal duty to make a federal income tax return.
The inclusion in Section 29 of the 1894 federal income tax of a duty to make a return causes that tax to be declared an unapportioned unconstitutional direct tax by the United States Supreme Court. Research of the basis of any property tax of any state of the Union will reveal that direct taxes are created by the imposition of a duty to make a return or list of taxable property.
The secret to understanding taxation in any self-governing society lies in history. A dramatic change occurs in the history of taxation when Americans declare their independence from the king of England. The history of the federal income tax from the Supreme Court's 1895 decision to the present becomes one of assumptions rather than of facts. There is, for example, an assumption that the 1894 federal income tax is the same as the 1913 federal income tax.
The 1894 tax is, of course a direct tax and the 1913 federal income tax is an indirect tax. Congress may impose indirect taxes on the incomes of those individuals over which it has legislative power members of Congress and the inferior federal judges but the Sixteenth Amendment never permitted an unapportioned direct tax. A direct tax under the rule of an English king is quite a different tax where the people rule themselves. The various facts that confine the duty of making and filing of federal income tax returns to members of Congress and the inferior federal judges will be discussed under various headings to combat the often made claim that not making an income tax return is based on an argument.
The king did not collect his own taxes so perhaps it was possible to argue against taxation with the king's tax collector, but how does one argue with the people? Income taxation is over burdened with arguments because of the erroneous assumption that others besides members of Congress and the inferior federal judges must make returns. The truth of any one of the many facts that are presented establishes that you have no duty to make a return, while an argument depends on the truth of each fact. This letter may appear to be disjointed because no argument is being made or presented but only a series of related facts that can independently establish that only members of Congress and the inferior federal judges have a duty to make returns. It may be that the fact of the legal duty to make a return is told and retold in these pages.
The reader is reminded that no attempt has been made to present facts in any special order. The most important fact is the absence of a legal duty to make a return. Every other fact presented is merely going to explain that fact. After exposure to whatever amount of facts any particular reader needs to make a decision, more information appears redundant. However, every medium and every letter has a limit. The importance of the subject warrants some duplication, so bold headings and signposts are provided to alert the busy reader. No fact presented here is more unassailable than that the inferior federal judges have a duty to make U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns.
Equally unassailable is the federal government's claim that the decisions of these judges is the basis of the federal income tax's legitimacy. The reader can pursue the details of all the facts presented here in other opinion letters to unequivocally prove the validity of each fact.
You have asked me, an attorney and counselor at law for more than thirty years, for a definitive statement that you have no legal duty to make a U.S. Individual Income Tax Form 1040 Return. Yes, you have no legal duty to make a federal income tax return and, therefore, you have no duty to make a state income tax return, if you live in a state that has enacted a personal income tax law. All states that have personal income tax laws base those laws on an obligation to make a federal return as part of our federalism. In the law, a legal duty either arises out of a contractual obligation or by operation of law. Federal law does not create obligations for the people in the several states.
According to my research, it is my opinion that only members of Congress and inferior federal judges have a legal duty to make such returns. The duty of all members of the House of Representatives and the Senate and the judges of the inferior federal courts to make federal returns may arise out of contract, by operation of law or both. It matters little, which basis is used to establish the obligation of members of Congress and the inferior federal judges, because I can find no others with a duty to make a form 1040 federal income tax return. A federal income taxpayer is a U.S. Individual, a citizen of the United States and a resident of a judicial district. The revenue districts have been abandoned.
The foregoing description of a taxpayer accurately describes members of Congress and inferior federal judges who also qualify as federal employees under §3401(c) Title 26 U.S.C. It is the unique characteristics of members of Congress and the inferior federal judge that makes the federal income tax possible. The Congress of the United States is a government of states, so a law like the federal income tax that applies to individuals applies to them alone.
The United States Supreme Court in O'Malley v. Woodrough, 307 U. S. 277 (1938) ruled that the inferior federal judges had to pay federal income taxes just like all other citizens. It was not explained that the citizens who were obliged to make returns were just the members of Congress. Section 134 of Title 28 U.S.C. requires that the judges reside within the judicial district where they serve, but the Code does not fully explain that the judicial district consists of only the federal territory within the state or counties of a portion of the named state.
After much legal research and thought, I have discovered that all governments have but two powers: the power to apportion direct taxes and the power to make laws. Kings and communists and all the forms of governments in between wield the same two unique and separate powers. Government power when exercised by a monarch or other tyrant appears to be absolute. The powers of government are especially distinct when exercised by free people in a free and self-governing society. Within in any kingdom or state, there are only two entities of any consequence: people and property. Freed from a king the people rule themselves and control their own property.
Once the people achieve self-rule, the power to tax themselves and their property cannot be exercised by any other entity it is an unalienable right. Because legislative power is limited to the subjects of legislation, the people can elect representatives to make laws and incidentally to enact indirect taxes. The Founding Fathers were well aware that direct taxes were taxes that were imposed directly on people and on the property within the jurisdiction: general real property and personal property. The requirement in the Constitution that direct taxes be apportioned to the several states is an oblique recognition by the Framers that the power to tax themselves was an unalienable right of the people.
My exhaustive study of taxation reveals a basic flaw in the way tax principles are understood. Today the fundamentals of taxation are equally misunderstood by tax professionals, journalists and politicians. The persons that enact tax legislation write about it and explain the laws to the public have only a vague understanding of it. Taxation is thought by the above named groups to be something that can be forced on people, if there is a good enough reason. Such a conception of taxation is completely contrary to circumstances that led to the Declaration of Independence and the ultimate freedom of the original thirteen states in the Treaty of Paris.
The Declaration of Independence decries the imposition of "taxes without our consent" because free people cannot remain free if taxes can be forced on them. Voluntary taxation is taxation based on the consent of the governed. This is a truth of self-government but truth is not to be arrived at solely by argument. Far more truth can be obtained by studying our principle of self-government: Government by the consent of the governed. The federal government acts as if consent to the federal income tax is final and unchangeable.
The truth for many is that they do not need to be governed they can govern themselves without government. Argument pre-supposes a losing argument and negates universal individual self-government and the consent of the governed. Taxation in America is long on argument and short on facts. When the two are brought into proper balance, argument will consistently establish that consensual taxation is the basis of every free society. I will make no argument here. I present my opinion of the pertinent facts and leave the reader to use them for whatever purpose the reader deems appropriate.
Complexity Of Federal Tax Laws Requires Reliance On A Professional's Opinion Of The Law
The purpose of this and other opinion letters in this series is to provide a reliance defense for the recipient should there be a need to establish that the person for whom the letter was written relied on the matters of fact and law expressed in the opinion letter. Self-government requires every citizen to know and obey the law, however, that duty has not been met with respect to federal income taxation. The commonly held assumption that income taxation is obligatory for all imposes an unreasonable constraint on those who recognize no such obligation.
The public's ignorance of the consensual character of all state and federal taxation places knowledgeable high-income earners at risk in criminal prosecutions. Federal income taxation is the most complicated subject of the federal law. Because of its complexity, millions of people simply pay what they believe is owed. That complexity is based on the language in the federal law that seems to command the making of returns and the payment of a tax. In 1991, the Supreme Court of the United States held in Cheek v. United States, 498 U.S.192 (1991) that a charge that a willful criminal violation of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) could be negated by evidence of a subjective belief that no legal duty existed with respect to the federal Internal Revenue laws.
The Cheek case and the reliance defense are discussed fully in my opinion letter on that case and the reliance defense. In this opinion, I will show why the current federal income tax law imposes no legal duty to make a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return and that at no time after 1894 has there been any duty been imposed on ordinary citizens to make any federal income tax return.
All legal obligations arise either out of contract or by operation of law. The obligations that govern the people of the states arise out of the common law and state statute law. California sets out the creation, enforcement and definition of an obligation in its statute law:
California Civil Code §1427.
Obligation, what. An obligation is a legal duty, by which a person is bound to do or not to do a certain thing.
California Civil Code §1428. Creation and Enforcement
An obligation arises either from: One The Contract of the parties; or, Two Operation of law. An obligation arising from operation of law may be enforced by law, or by civil action or proceeding.
California Code Civil Procedure §26. Obligation defined
An obligation is a legal duty, by which one person is bound to do or not do a certain thing, and arises from: One Contract; or, Two Operation of law.
Federal law has no application to the citizens of the several states because it is essentially a law of states, domestic and foreign. Federal law cannot be an extension of the state's common law because federal law is exclusive to federal territory. The laws of the several states are expressly made the rules of decision in the federal courts in §1652 Title 28 U.S.C. to accommodate those litigants that voluntarily submit to federal diversity jurisdiction. Just a cursory reading of the Constitution will establish that the document is a grant of governmental power to the three branches of a federal government and certain restrictions on the governments of the states.
The legislative power vested in Congress creates the national government President William Howard Taft mentions in his June 16th address to Congress but that legislative power does not extend to any of the citizens of the several states. Such a citizen has only obligations that arise out of contract or by operation of state law. In direct taxation of property located within a state, citizens have a personal duty to disclose to a popularly elected assessor all taxable property. The common law system of direct taxation that operated under the authority of the monarch of England may only operate with elected assessors and tax collectors in America because the people may not alienate their right to impose direct taxes. The rights to life, liberty and property are, according to the Declaration of Independence, "unalienable Rights." No others but the people have the power impose direct taxes.
The United States Constitution prohibits direct taxation of the people in the states by mandating that direct taxes to be apportioned to the states. In the states, direct taxes are only those apportioned to people or property. An individual subject to a federal income tax can only be obligated to pay that tax by operation of law, which automatically makes the tax indirect. Thus, any attempt to impose a federal income tax obligation on a citizen must be done by legislative power. Since the Declaration of Independence, practically all new governments that claim to be governments governed by the consent of the governed consist of three parts: a legislative, an executive and a judicial. All these parts have the inherent authority to maintain a separation and independence from the other parts.
Congress has legislative power over its own members, which include other officers of the United States in the legislative branch. So, if no legal obligation compels the making and filing of a federal income tax return, because the imposition of a duty to make a return creates a direct tax, all returns made by persons not members of Congress or inferior federal judges are necessarily voluntary. The reader may now want to examine those United States Supreme Court decisions that held that the Sixteenth Amendment neither added nor took away any power of taxation. When the people of a land throw out an autocrat be he a king or self-installed despot, as they did in America and decide to rule themselves, all future taxes are consensually self-imposed. In the United Kingdom, Parliament rules with the power of the king, because the king has over time relinquished power to Parliament. In each of the United States the king has been removed and nobility specifically prohibited.
Direct taxes are self-imposed outside legislative processes and indirect taxes are imposed using legislative means. In the several states, a mandatory federal income tax would be, if it were possible, an extension of the existing property tax. Such a federal tax has been declared unconstitutional and the Sixteenth Amendment does nothing to permit such a tax on individuals, other than members of Congress and the inferior federal judges, in the several states. The federal income tax can only exist as a voluntary tax on those not members of Congress or inferior federal judges.
Understanding the mandatory and voluntary federal income tax has taken me immense individual concentration, which I can now share with you by means of these opinion letters. Any attempt to understand the tax as only mandatory will result in failure. President George W. Bush's first Secretary of the Treasury, Paul H. O' Neill called the tax "9,500 pages of gibberish," in a July 16th Amendment, 2001, New York Times article, because he could not understand that the tax had limited application to Congress and the administrative federal courts. That is of no importance to you because you have no legal obligations with respect to its provisions.
If the full meaning of the preceding statements of fact are understood and appreciated, the balance of this opinion letter and the others that follow will be perceived as a presentment of facts, rather than an argument, that will explain personal income taxation as personal and voluntary. Ignorant government employees must view any refusal to accept universal personal income taxation as compulsory as contentious claims rather than as a right of the people.
They are employed for the purpose of getting persons not members of Congress or inferior federal judges to volunteer to make and file U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns or to otherwise pay federal income taxes. The simple realization that, as mere employees, they have no power or authority to impose their views on anyone not similarly employed would immediately terminate their effectiveness. Government employees like all employees perform tasks. They cannot and do not exercise discretionary power over the people of the states.
The typical IRS view that its employees are free to impose legal tax obligations on citizens is completely contrary to law and the freedom that self-government is supposed to secure. That view of taxation stems from a concept of taxation as the prerogative of an English monarch. Such a view of taxation merely substitutes the rule of a present day government bureaucracy for that of any ordinary autocrat. Control of education by this same bureaucracy assures continuity of this self-serving federal income tax. Continued control of education by less than mediocre scholars will guarantee further economic recession. Self-rule is so relatively recent in the span of world history that every element of self-government that touches upon rule by the people must constantly be re-examined to determine if it is consistent with the principles set out in our organic law.
It would come as a great shock to members of the Libertarian Party that the Declaration of Rights, Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation and Constitution create a libertarian government. Modern government and tax scholarship fails to recognize that elimination of the English monarch in American society makes everything governmental including taxation consensual. Even before the Declarations of Rights and Independence, taxation in the American colonies was only acceptable if it was consensual.
All direct taxes were considered gifts from the people to their government and any indirect tax could be avoided by a simple abstention from the activity subject to the legislated indirect tax. Even a casual reading of the historic documents mentioned here should alert the reader that "consent" and "consensual" are used to mean voluntary. Federal job duties that are a requirement of federal government tax collecting employment are a function of federal bureaucratic administration of public law and not self-imposed taxation.
In any self-governing society, a citizen's duties are either personally self-imposed or they are accepted when conferred by the people through a popular election. That elected public official usually appoints, with the advice and consent of the legislature, a person that will act as a federal employer. Government employees are true public servants because their employer must either be a government official with some duty or an administrator who can only assist members of the public to take consensual actions.
The Purpose Of This Opinion Letter
This opinion letter explains why only members of Congress and the inferior federal judges are individuals who have a legal duty to make a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. This means, of course, that you have no legal duty to make a 1040 return, even though you may consider yourself an individual. Congress has identified the federal income tax as the individual income tax to disclose, to those in the know, the limits of the law's application.
You have learned that the 1894 federal income tax law imposed, in Section 29, on all citizens and residents of the United States, a duty to make and file federal income tax returns, and that the imposition of a duty to make a return or list of taxable property by federal law on United States citizens creates a direct tax. Because direct taxes are taxes imposed by the people on themselves or their property using elected assessors and tax collectors, a direct tax on all the incomes of the people is considered to be a practical impossibility when attempted by Congress.
The attempt to impose such a duty in the 1894 federal income tax created a direct tax on citizens and residents of the United States, so the federal income tax was declared unconstitutional the next year, when the tax was challenged in the Supreme Court. The legislatures of self-governing people may ask for direct tax revenue but those bodies have no authority to demand a direct tax payment of any citizen. Direct taxation is outside the authority of any legislature. An amendment of any state or federal constitution for any self-governing people to permit a legislature to impose direct taxes would have the effect of creating an oligarchy consisting of that legislature.
The language of the Sixteenth Amendment simply provided that all future federal income taxes would be indirect. The 1894 income tax was a direct tax that had not been apportioned to the several states; removal of the duty to make a return was all that was needed to make it direct and legal. The Sixteenth Amendment provided for "taxes on incomes," indirect taxes on the incomes it had power to tax from the beginning of the Constitution. Article I, Section 6 does not protect the compensation for services of Senator and Representatives, as the Constitution protects the compensation for services of the President and the Justices of the Supreme Court.
Why do you have to obtain an opinion letter from a high-priced lawyer so you can understand the law? Everything in a free society is consensual. However, once consent is given or choice or decision is made consequences may arise that make the services of an attorney and counselor at law advisable. The tax law's complexity serves two purposes. Because only members of Congress and the inferior federal judges have a duty to make returns, many others voluntarily make 1040 returns. The complexity of the law is justified because only experts such as members of Congress and the inferior federal judges have a legal duty to make returns.
Most people who have attempted to read the law that is the federal income tax are shocked by the law's complexity. Can you imagine the federal income tax system administered by a person who thinks that the Internal Revenue Code and Regulations are 9,500 pages of gibberish? You don't have to try. Former Secretary of the Treasury Paul O'Neill told that to a reporter for the New York Times in an article that appeared July 16, 2001. He was supposed to administer and enforce the federal tax laws, so you can be assured that we will not find the key to understanding the federal income tax in the federal government. I hope to use the federal tax law's complexity to teach a valuable lesson. That lesson is to always seek out the simplicity and truth in everything.
If the truth of my explanation is accepted for the present purpose of understanding the federal income tax, you will have the proof you want for yourself. No one can or will deny that members of Congress and the inferior federal judges have a duty to make U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns, because they are certainly in that group where everyone with sufficient "gross income" is required to make and file a return. This letter establishes that it is impossible to find others with a legal duty to make U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.
The Constitution requires members of Congress and the inferior federal judges to accept the duty of making and filing returns by standing for election and accepting an appointment to public office; the Declaration of Independence removes a king and proclaims only a right and duty of a free people to throw off a despotic government. The first document is a compilation of rules for the branches of the federal government. The second document makes it perfectly clear that "governments are instituted among men" to secure the fruits of freedom.
The people of the several states are free because any duties they have are self-imposed. When the king of England's government failed America, his government had to be abolished. The making and filing of a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return is not compelled except for members of Congress and the inferior federal judges because the people can alter or abolish the government at their will. A despotic government can hardly been thrown off if voluntary taxes must be paid to it. Knowledge of law and government is absolutely necessary to discharge the right and duty of a free people to decide which government secures the life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness promised in the Declaration of Independence.
The purpose of an attorney's representation is to clarify and explain a citizen's responsibilities with respect to the law. This and other opinion letters will present the factual issues you will need to have placed in your administrative file. Make copies of these opinion letters and highlight those portions that are particularly relevant to your situation. Retain copies of what you have sent to the IRS or your state income tax office. Please remember that all persons claiming authority to collect federal or state income taxes are merely attempting to obtain your consent to an income tax.
Government employees have no authority to determine the amount of a tax, the validity of any tax or make a legal interpretation of any document. If asked, these employees will admit they only attempting to collect a debt. The collection of any invalid debt may be challenged by demanding proof of the debt's validity.
I begin the process of explaining the process of the administration of federal income taxation by providing a copy of the 1894 income tax law, pointing out the duty imposed to make a return and then explaining that the duty to make and file a return never appears again in any federal or state income tax law. Locating the imposition of the duty in Section 29 of the 1894 federal income tax law is easy.
Finding your state's statute that imposed the penalty for not making a list or return of taxable property might require the assistance of a law librarian, but once found can be made available to all who wish to see how each state has established a property tax. The present federal income tax law can be found in Subtitle A, Title 26 U.S.C., which can be located in any large library or can be purchased from any of the federal government's bookstores.
Every federal income tax law, from the present back to 1894, can be examined for a duty to make and file a return and none will be found until the 1894 act is reached. With a duty to make a return an income tax law is unconstitutional and without a duty to make a return federal income taxation it is a volunteered indirect tax and never a self-imposed direct tax. Without knowledge of government and taxation your voluntary income tax payment looks like a tax to you, and no one can challenge what you had done, because they are mere employees. The balance of this and my other opinion letters will explain specific government and personal income tax issues, but the absence of a legal duty to make and file a return answers your question about your legal duty. You can easily plunge into the administrative law of being a taxpayer by making and filing a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.
Without a legal duty to make a return, only members of Congress and the inferior federal judges, with independent governmental duties are legally obligated to make, file returns and pay federal income taxes.
Personal income taxation must be and is a voluntarily self-imposed tax for those not in Congress or a federal judge. The federal income tax found in the 1894 Wilson-Gorman Act, and which was held to be an unapportioned direct tax, was and still is unconstitutional. The Sixteenth Amendment could not authorize an unapportioned direct tax, so it was written to give the appearance of doing just that. The Amendment really does the opposite.
In the future, a federal income tax can only be an indirect tax and it has been so interpreted except for one lapse in 1988, United States v. Wells Fargo Bank et al, 485 US 351, 357 (1988), 99L Ed 2d 368, 377, 108 S Ct 546. Taxes on property remain direct taxes and all such taxes on property impose a duty to make a return or list of the taxpayer's taxable property. The people of every state employ property taxes as the basis of their self-taxation.
If you research your state's property tax laws, you will find at the initiation of every property tax the imposition of a duty to make a list or return of taxable property. The duty to disclose taxable property continues, so that, for instance, "escaped assessments" can be charged to those who failed to disclose improvements to real property. Complete disclosure permits creation of a list of all taxable property and hence one tax that is apportioned to that property. Though many people believe that the present federal income tax is a direct tax, that is an impossibility. Direct taxes must be apportioned to either people or property.
Taxes that are not apportioned are called indirect taxes. In every self-governing society, all taxes must fall neatly into one of the these two categories, but monarchs and despots may combine the two. When the people tax themselves they elect assessors and tax collectors to handle the details of direct taxation. The federal income tax is completely statutory, so it must be an indirect tax. Because there is no political power above that of the people, the executive and legislature ask for an amount of direct taxes from the people.
The people in the Constitution granted to Congress the power to ask for an amount of direct taxes, provided the amount was apportioned to the several states by population. There is, therefore, no individual obligation to make direct tax returns. Members of Congress and the inferior federal judges have a duty to make U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns because Subtitle A, Title 26 U.S.C. imposes a tax on their gross income and their oaths of office obligate them to make and file returns.
The common law recognizes obligations that arise from contract and by operation of law but the common law has no application to the legislative branch of the federal government. Since taxation that might apply to some of the people of the several states does not arise from a contractual relationship with government, we must look to federal statute law to determine federal tax obligations. As federal law is applicable only to federal people and federal territory, we must first establish if you are either a federal person or are engaged in some activity on federal territory.
Real property owned by the United States and subject to its jurisdiction is federal property for the purpose of our discussion. Just as inhabitants of one state need not obey the laws of an adjoining state, only federal people or others on federal property have an obligation to obey federal territorial law. All law is territorial and federal law applies, according to §5 Title 18 U.S.C., only to the "places and waters, continental or insular, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States."
The Congress of the United States is a legislature of the governments of the several states of the Union and not a legislature of the people of those states. The Congress of the United States is a legislature made up of the representatives of the sovereign and independent states, which according to the result of the Civil War are locked in a perpetual Union. The original states of the Union that preceded the United States and the people of those states having created sovereign and independent states could only take from the government of those states the legislative powers granted to Congress in the Constitution. Direct taxation is the people's unalienable power to tax themselves and to have no others tax them.
Legislative powers of the federal government are limited to those that the people can alienate and are further limited by the first sentence of the Constitution to the legislative powers granted in that document. The people of the states have granted to Congress only those governmental powers formerly held by the state representatives of the people of those states, under the Articles of Confederation. With respect to the powers specifically described in the Constitution plus the power to determine the amount of a direct tax to be apportioned to the several states, the people conferred those in that document. Indirect taxes are limited to the legislative power of Congress.
Federal people may be variously described as U.S. citizens, U.S. individuals or citizens of the United States. Any person, regardless of his or her true status, is free to claim to be a federal person of whatever label. However, only members of Congress and the inferior federal judges are the true U.S. Individuals subject to the legislative power of Congress and there can be no doubt that they have a duty to make and file U.S. Individual Income Tax Returns.
Although I won't advise you not to make and file a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, practically everyone else will tell you that you had better or you will eventually go to prison, if you do not. Except for members of Congress and inferior federal judges, the decision to make and file a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return is a personal decision. I will not interfere with your freedom by telling you that you have a duty that in law you do not have. The absence of a known legal duty to make and file a federal income tax return precludes any criminal liability for failing or refusing to make such a return. Persons have been found guilty of failure to file and tax evasion, but the fallibility of our justice systems has also been proven.
Through the use of DNA evidence, erroneous imprisonment of the factually innocent is a common occurrence. The absence of a legal duty to make a return is the DNA of a federal charge of tax evasion. My research proves that only members of Congress and the inferior federal judges have duties to make and file returns, so only they may be criminally prosecuted. Their duty arises from the oath of office because the duty has not been found in any federal income tax legislation since the Supreme Court declared the 1894 federal income tax law unconstitutional.
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