Putting A Leash on the IRS

Congress considers a taxpayers' bill of rights

She owed no back taxes and had broken no law. But that did not stop the Internal Revenue Service from seizing $22,000 in Shirley Lojeski's bank account. Lojeski, who breeds Thoroughbred horses in Pipersville, Pa., was unaware that anything was wrong until her checks suddenly started bouncing. Mystified at first, she eventually realized that the IRS had taken her money as a way to get at her boyfriend, Thomas Treadway. The agency had accused Treadway, who ran a trash-management business, of owing $247,000 in back taxes, and suspected that he was stashing his money in Lojeski's account. Treadway later established that...

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