Hinck v. United States
In Hinck v. United States, 127 S. Ct. 2011 (2007), the unanimous U.S. Supreme Court held that the Tax Court provides the exclusive forum for judicial review of a refusal to abate interest under § 6404(e)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Interest accrues on unpaid taxes, and sometimes it takes a while for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to determine that taxes should have been paid that were not. Section 6404(e)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code permits the Secretary of the Treasury to abate interest—to forgive it, partially or in whole—if the assessment of interest on a deficiency is attributable to unreasonable error or delay on the part of the IRS. Section 6404(h) allows for judicial review of the Secretary's decision not to grant such relief.
The Court held that review may be obtained only in the Tax Court, not in the district courts and the Court of Federal Claims.