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You are NOT legally required to pay personal federal income taxes

Forget the war in Iraq, Afghanistan and our excellent adventure in Liberia. Forget about Kobe, Arnold, Arriana, Scott and Laci. The biggest news of the entire week is that on August 8, 2003, the IRS was unable to convince a jury in Memphis, Tennessee that the Federal Tax Code requires the citizens to pay individual income taxes. I kid you not.
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I watched as many Sunday news programs as I could possibly stand, and I didn't hear a single mention of the IRS' debacle in Memphis. If you ever had doubts about the mainstream media being controlled by the federal government, doubt no more.

For those not already aware, FedEx Pilot Vernice Kuglin began studying the IRS Code some years ago, and was simply unable to find anywhere in the code that she was required to pay federal income taxes.

And here's the most remarkable part: Back in 1995, Kuglin wrote letters in good faith to the IRS, asking them to show her where the Tax Code requires individual citizens to pay federal income taxes. Incredibly, the IRS never answered a single one of her letters!

As she studied the facts, laws and related documents more, Kuglin became convinced that, regardless of the IRS' failure to respond one way or the other, she was exempt from paying federal income taxes. So, Kuglin filled out W-4 forms showing 99 exemptions, and turned them in to her employer. Doing that meant Kuglin got to take home almost all of her paycheck each payday, instead of what was left after the feds ravaged it.

The IRS went after Kuglin for six counts of tax evasion on $920,000.00 income, and for filing "false" W-4 forms, charges that could have put the 58 year-old Kuglin in federal prison for up to 30 years and cost her 1.5 million in fines.

Apparently, things didn't go quite the slam-dunk way federal prosecutor Joe Murphy thought they would. My money says the IRS wishes they had never gone after Kuglin at all. In fact, after the jury returned not guilty verdicts on all counts, Murphy is reported to have demanded that the judge order Kuglin to file her forms, pay her taxes and "obey the law". The judge reportedly replied, "Sir, I don't work for the IRS."

Now pinch yourself and review this astonishing turn of events: A highly trained and educated federal prosecutor in Memphis was unable to convince 12 American citizens that Vernice Kuglin was required to pay federal income taxes. He was clearly unable to produce a single section of the Tax Code to that end, and the jury was unanimous in clearing Kuglin of all charges against her. If the foregoing was not so, Kuglin would have been convicted.

Jurors tend not to be very sympathetic with tax scofflaws, since each one of them is also a taxpayer and they understandably feel resentment towards anyone not paying "their fair share". So in order for this federal jury to completely vindicate Kuglin, the government's failure to prove their case against her had to have been clear and unequivocal!

I haven't read the trial transcript yet, but I must assume the federal prosecutor at least tried to twist some vague and ambiguous section of the Tax Code to make it look like it applied to Kuglin. I don't know that, but I'll bet he tried. What else could he use to prosecute her with?

Thanks to the IRS' arrogance and stupidity, and Kuglin's refusal to plead to lesser charges, Kuglin accomplished what Bob Schultz and the other "tax protesters" had been denied all along: To force the IRS into a public debate and to answer the question of whether or not the Tax Code requires an individual to pay personal income taxes. Kuglin and her two attorneys, Larry Becraft and Robert Bernhoft, have unequivocally forced the IRS to show its hand, and 12 judges hearing that debate ruled the answer to be "NO".

I think it's time for everyone reading this to send a very polite letter to the IRS, telling them they read about the case in Memphis, and is it true that there is no section in the U.S. Tax Code that requires an individual citizen to pay federal income taxes?

Don't be threatening in any way, or announce that you plan to stop paying federal income taxes. This request is for your personal edification, and you just simply want to know the truth.

Like Kuglin, you probably won't get an answer back, but just to prove you sent the letter and that they received it, be certain to send the letter via certified U.S. Mail, with a return receipt requested. When you get that receipt back, staple it to a copy of the letter you sent the IRS, and put it somewhere real secure, like a personal safe or bank deposit box.

I don't have to explain why, now do I?

GRINGO STARS spotted this story at;

Hey Carl 16.Sep.2003 09:04

curious in Multnomah County

Multnomah County now has an income tax passed by initiative (supposedly it will only be for three years). I don't think it is valid because there is no collection mechanism built into the initiative. The county has never collected income taxes before and has no such mechanism set up. That would mean either a new bureacracy is set up or a private company will be hired to collect.

The new tax collecting bureaucracy is a problem because where is the oversight, the rules and regulations and by the way aren't tax collectors usually elected public officials?

If the collection mechanism is private that is a problem because handing over personal information to a corporation violates privacy laws.

What do you think?

Thanks 16.Sep.2003 09:43

I just wrote my letter

I heard about this case but forgot about it. Thanks for posting this it motivated me to write a letter. I'll send it out today via certified mail.

Here ya go! 16.Sep.2003 11:01


I'll just post the internal revenue code section heading and the first few lines because section 1 goes on for a long, long while describing the taxes "imposed" on different types of people (married/ joint filers, individual filers, etc.). I'm not familiar with the memphis case or what arguments the parties made or failed to make, but this seems pretty clear to me. A tax cannot be "imposed" unless it is collected. I'm fairly certain, with the possible exception of this memphis case, all of the so called "tax denyers" who have been prosecuted have been found guilty of tax evasion.

TITLE 26 > Subtitle A > CHAPTER 1 > Subchapter A > PART I > Sec. 1.
Sec. 1. - Tax imposed

(a) Married individuals filing joint returns and surviving spouses

There is hereby imposed on the taxable income of - ...........................


Obligatory 16th Amendment Comment 16.Sep.2003 11:27


It's fairly plain from US Tax Law that you *are* indeed required to pay taxes. Everyone points to the term "voluntary compliance" as proof that you don't have to, but that's just ridiculous. What the term means, quite obviously, is that the taxman does not come to your house and assess what you own, and take their share. You report your income, and they have certain auditing powers.

Even if you don't see how wrong the "voluntary compliance" argument is, all you have to do is look at the 16th Amendment, and the whole argument falls apart.

"The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever sources derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration."

Now, some people claim the 16th Amendment was never properly ratified, and is thus null and void. Were that true, then despite IRS Tax Codes and US Federal Tax Laws, the Federal government would certainly not have the power to collect income taxes. But I've never seen any compelling evidence that the claim is true. If no such evidence exists today, the chances are we'll never see any.

This is dangerous 16.Sep.2003 12:08

me or you

Have had friends who tried this, they excaped going to jail by the skin of their teeth, and paid many thousands in penaltys. Don't pay and then you will see what privacy invasion is all about.

Misconceptions, misconceptions, misconceptions 16.Sep.2003 12:31


I've seen stuff like this before. Such claims usually come from a crowd that has a quasi-religious view of the United States at the time of its founding, and if only we can go back to that original paradise, all will be ideal. Such views manifest themselves, as religious views tend to do, in appeals to authority of various sorts: the "original intent" of the framers of the US Constitution, various legalistic minutia about how that Constitution may be amended, judges that fail to interpret the law as tradition dictates they should, and so on. The fact that not all the I's were properly dotted and the T's properly crossed is more important than any reality of how that resulting system is or is not generating death, destruction, and suffering in the world.

They tend to ignore the places where many of the Constitution's framers specifically said it was their intent to give the courts, and in particular the Supreme Court, broad authority to determine what is and isn't constitutional (if I had more time, I could do some searching on the net and drag up some choice quotes from some of the Federalist Papers and other such sources on this). In other words, their appeals to authority and and the halcyon days are refuted by exactly the times and sources they purport to worship.

I know of no claim that US citizens are in general exempt from paying income taxes ever being upheld. If you don't pay your taxes, you ARE breaking the law and you ARE risking prosecution as such.

None of this should be taken as endorsement for being a good little cog in the machinery of the leviathan and acquiescing to its operation. I practice war tax resistance myself; there's a difference between legality and morality. But I don't harbor any misconceptions about it being a legal or risk-free endeavor, either.

I know the local chapter of the War Resisters League offers regular classes on war tax resistance for those interested. I believe they can be contacted at 503-238-0605. Also see  http://www.axisofpeace.info . I strongly encourage anyone interested in practicing war tax resistance to check this out beforehand; there's various strategies one can pursue to reduce one's risk; it's a rather tangled legal issue: some forms of resistance are felonies, some are misdemeanors. Given that one can accomplish very successful tax resistance while at the same time avoiding the felony tax crimes, it really behooves one to learn all the ramifications before starting.

There's no sense in needlessly becoming a martyr to the cause.

INCOME 16.Sep.2003 15:05


Greetings Boys and Girls...! The Requirement to pay taxes is not what is in dispute by the media labeled "Tax Protesters"..., what is in dispute is the word "INCOME"! Find out what the word really means and you will see why Vernice Kuglin was awarded the "NOT GUILTY" verdict for failing to pay "INCOME" Taxes.

Understand first!

Sometimes, you can't ignore a fool 16.Sep.2003 16:57


I'm sure no one's really interested in this thread and I'm not really very interested in this, but here's the general subchapter of the revenue code which meticulously defines gross income, adjusted gross income, taxable income, et cetera. The tax code, like so many other laws, has been over written in an attempt to account for every conceivable contingency that could arise that it has had the ironic happenstance to confuse even the most knowledgeable tax attorneys on some occasions. However, the claims that you legally don't have to pay income tax and claims "no-income trusts" that people promote at seminars are, in the words of Bill S. Preston, Esq. "bogus."

TITLE 26 > Subtitle A > CHAPTER 1 > Subchapter B > PART I

Here's the specific definition of taxable income:

TITLE 26 > Subtitle A > CHAPTER 1 > Subchapter B > PART I > Sec. 63. Prev | Next
Sec. 63. - Taxable income defined

(a) In general

Except as provided in subsection (b), for purposes of this subtitle, the term ''taxable income'' means gross income minus the deductions allowed by this chapter (other than the standard deduction).

(b) Individuals who do not itemize their deductions

In the case of an individual who does not elect to itemize his deductions for the taxable year, for purposes of this subtitle, the term ''taxable income'' means adjusted gross income, minus -


the standard deduction, and


the deduction for personal exemptions provided in section 151.

(c) Standard deduction

For purposes of this subtitle -

(1) In general

Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, the term ''standard deduction'' means the sum of -


the basic standard deduction, and


the additional standard deduction.

(2) Basic standard deduction

For purposes of paragraph (1), the basic standard deduction is -


$5,000 in the case of -


a joint return, or


a surviving spouse (as defined in section 2(a)),


$4,400 in the case of a head of household (as defined in section 2(b)),


$3,000 in the case of an individual who is not married and who is not a surviving spouse or head of household, or


$2,500 in the case of a married individual filing a separate return.

(3) Additional standard deduction for aged and blind

For purposes of paragraph (1), the additional standard deduction is the sum of each additional amount to which the taxpayer is entitled under subsection (f).

(4) Adjustments for inflation

In the case of any taxable year beginning in a calendar year after 1988, each dollar amount contained in paragraph (2) or (5) or subsection (f) shall be increased by an amount equal to -


such dollar amount, multiplied by


the cost-of-living adjustment determined under section 1(f)(3) for the calendar year in which the taxable year begins, by substituting for ''calendar year 1992'' in subparagraph (B) thereof -


''calendar year 1987'' in the case of the dollar amounts contained in paragraph (2) or (5)(A) or subsection (f), and


''calendar year 1997'' in the case of the dollar amount contained in paragraph (5)(B).

(5) Limitation on basic standard deduction in the case of certain dependents

In the case of an individual with respect to whom a deduction under section 151 is allowable to another taxpayer for a taxable year beginning in the calendar year in which the individual's taxable year begins, the basic standard deduction applicable to such individual for such individual's taxable year shall not exceed the greater of -


$500, or


the sum of $250 and such individual's earned income.

(6) Certain individuals, etc., not eligible for standard deduction

In the case of -


a married individual filing a separate return where either spouse itemizes deductions,


a nonresident alien individual,


an individual making a return under section 443(a)(1) for a period of less than 12 months on account of a change in his annual accounting period, or


an estate or trust, common trust fund, or partnership,

the standard deduction shall be zero.

(d) Itemized deductions

For purposes of this subtitle, the term ''itemized deductions'' means the deductions allowable under this chapter other than -


the deductions allowable in arriving at adjusted gross income, and


the deduction for personal exemptions provided by section 151.

(e) Election to itemize

(1) In general

Unless an individual makes an election under this subsection for the taxable year, no itemized deduction shall be allowed for the taxable year. For purposes of this subtitle, the determination of whether a deduction is allowable under this chapter shall be made without regard to the preceding sentence.

(2) Time and manner of election

Any election under this subsection shall be made on the taxpayer's return, and the Secretary shall prescribe the manner of signifying such election on the return.

(3) Change of election

Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, a change of election with respect to itemized deductions for any taxable year may be made after the filing of the return for such year. If the spouse of the taxpayer filed a separate return for any taxable year corresponding to the taxable year of the taxpayer, the change shall not be allowed unless, in accordance with such regulations -


the spouse makes a change of election with respect to itemized deductions, for the taxable year covered in such separate return, consistent with the change of treatment sought by the taxpayer, and


the taxpayer and his spouse consent in writing to the assessment (within such period as may be agreed on with the Secretary) of any deficiency, to the extent attributable to such change of election, even though at the time of the filing of such consent the assessment of such deficiency would otherwise be prevented by the operation of any law or rule of law.

This paragraph shall not apply if the tax liability of the taxpayer's spouse for the taxable year corresponding to the taxable year of the taxpayer has been compromised under section 7122.

(f) Aged or blind additional amounts

(1) Additional amounts for the aged

The taxpayer shall be entitled to an additional amount of $600 -


for himself if he has attained age 65 before the close of his taxable year, and


for the spouse of the taxpayer if the spouse has attained age 65 before the close of the taxable year and an additional exemption is allowable to the taxpayer for such spouse under section 151(b).

(2) Additional amount for blind

The taxpayer shall be entitled to an additional amount of $600 -


for himself if he is blind at the close of the taxable year, and


for the spouse of the taxpayer if the spouse is blind as of the close of the taxable year and an additional exemption is allowable to the taxpayer for such spouse under section 151(b).

For purposes of subparagraph (B), if the spouse dies during the taxable year the determination of whether such spouse is blind shall be made as of the time of such death.

(3) Higher amount for certain unmarried individuals

In the case of an individual who is not married and is not a surviving spouse, paragraphs (1) and (2) shall be applied by substituting ''$750'' for ''$600''.

(4) Blindness defined

For purposes of this subsection, an individual is blind only if his central visual acuity does not exceed 20/200 in the better eye with correcting lenses, or if his visual acuity is greater than 20/200 but is accompanied by a limitation in the fields of vision such that the widest diameter of the visual field subtends an angle no greater than 20 degrees.

(g) Marital status

For purposes of this section, marital status shall be determined under section 7703

Eh 16.Sep.2003 21:45


I started to reply to this. The gist of it is, yes, you have to pay your taxes. These are the same people that have claimed Ohio is not a state in order to get out of their taxes.

Then I realized, eh, the ratio of "doing time in the pokey for tax evasion" to "got off scott free" is extremely, extremely low. So y'all stop paying your taxes if you want, I could care less. I'll just be the one pointing and laughing at you when you're hauled off to court to meet the tax man.

Get over it, people. The IRS has been around long enough to have seen every trick in the book tried by some cheapskate aiming to avoid taxes.

The facts remain... 17.Sep.2003 22:19


Vernice Kruglin did not pay her taxes for at least six years. She did this openly, and documented her every move. Her case was decided by a jury of her "peers." The jury was *unanimous* in ruling her INNOCENT on all charges. These are all facts.

The court system in the USA is highly dependant on the skill/connections of the lawyer, and how much money you have to pay a particular lawyer of excellent skill/connections. If you want to try what Vernice Kruglin did, study every similar case, and instead of paying taxes, save up for a very good lawyer who knows how to handle this situation. It's better than paying for constant imperialist war. It's better than paying corporations who lose billions every year and only stay in business because of corporate welfare.

ex-Secretary of State Alexander Haig once remarked about a peaceful protest "They can protest all they want as long as they pay their taxes." This underscores both the innefectiveness of peaceful protest (a whole other subject that I shouldn't really bring up here) and also the importance of taxes to the smooth functioning of a government (or a corrupt empire).

Not paying taxes will not stop war 17.Sep.2003 23:06


There's something to be said for taking the moral high-road, and not personally financing the Federal government, and its wars. I'll give you that. But even if a majority of citizens stopped paying their Federal taxes, it wouldn't make a spittin' bit of difference. We'd still have war, and we'd still have the government.

The government couldn't put a majority of the population in prison -- just not possible. And without the threat of prison, they could not levy civil penalties either. So what to do? The most likely course would be cuts in social programs. Or alternatively, the government would just print money, and we'd all pay our taxes in inflation.

(But by the same token, if everyone stopped paying their taxes, presumably they would also replace their government.)

What's my point, then? That tax resistance is just yet another form of peaceful protest. It cannot and will not stop the war machine.

here's 1 18.Sep.2003 06:46


No double jeopardy, alex 18.Sep.2003 11:00


The memphis person was found innocent of criminal charges, however, the IRS has standing to bring a civil suit agaist her for the taxes owing, get a judgment, and attach/execute on her property. A civil case won't be precluded by the earlier criminal case. I read a comment that in that district, the conviction rate for criminal tax evasion is 93%. Assuming that rate is fairly constant accross all dstricts, do you want to be a 7 percenter?

Important for EVERY American 24.Mar.2004 17:06


If there is truly a concern as to whether or not one is required to pay federal income tax, this website should answer many questions you may have. thelawthatneverwas.com some of you are right in that there are tax laws that claim we as americans need to pay federal income tax. however, in order for these laws to be valid under the 16th ammendment, you must first prove that the 16th ammendment was ratified. if it wasnt, it would make many of us question the validity of current federal income tax "laws." a little history in 1913 for every smart american to read up on.

hasnt paid taxes in 15 yrs 03.Apr.2004 11:18

anonymous mot7355@aol.com

i know of somebody that hasnt earned any money in 15 yrs , he was a stay at home dad his common law gf took care of the earning of the money .. know that their daughter is grown he wants to get back in the working world and become a taxpayer again ... will he be audited and if he is is it a crime not to earn money and not file a return
please respond