United States District Court, D. Nevada
M. Navarro, Chief Judge.
before the Court is the Motion for Summary Judgment, (ECF No.
31), filed by Defendant United States of America
(“Defendant”). Pro se Plaintiff William Young
(“Plaintiff”) did not file a response, and the time
to do so has passed. For the reasons discussed below, the
Court GRANTS Defendant's Motion.
case arises out of Plaintiff s failure to pay his taxes for
the years of 2006 to 2012. Specifically, Plaintiff alleges
that he received a Notice of Levy on April 20, 2016, for
$280, 243.46. (Compl. at 2, ECF No. 1). Plaintiff contests
this Notice by asserting that it is “legally
void” because the Internal Revenue Service
(“IRS”) “failed to create and mail a
statutory notice of deficiency for [the] years [of] 2006,
2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012 to Plaintiff by
certified or registered mail as required by 26 U.S.C.
§§ 6212(a) and 6213(a).” (Id. at 2).
Plaintiff therefore asserts that because the IRS allegedly
did not mail him the statutory notices of deficiency, he is
not required to pay the money owed for those years. (See
Id. at 4).
filed his Complaint on October 21, 2016, asking the Court to
“find that the tax assessments against Plaintiff for
tax years 2006 - 2012 as enumerated in the ‘Notice of
Levy' are invalid because the IRS failed to create and
mail the [statutory notices of deficiency] to
Plaintiff.” (Id. at 4). On September 19, 2017,
Defendant filed the instant Motion for Summary Judgment, (ECF
No. 31), alleging that the Court does not have jurisdiction
over this case due to sovereign immunity. (See Mot.
for Summ. J. (“MSJ”) 12:22-23).
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provide for summary
adjudication when the pleadings, depositions, answers to
interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the
affidavits, if any, show that “there is no genuine
dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to
judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a).
Material facts are those that may affect the outcome of the
case. See Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S.
242, 248 (1986). A dispute as to a material fact is genuine
if there is sufficient evidence for a reasonable jury to
return a verdict for the nonmoving party. See Id.
“Summary judgment is inappropriate if reasonable
jurors, drawing all inferences in favor of the nonmoving
party, could return a verdict in the nonmoving party's
favor.” Diaz v. Eagle Produce Ltd. P'ship,
521 F.3d 1201, 1207 (9th Cir. 2008) (citing United States
v. Shumway, 199 F.3d 1093, 1103-04 (9th Cir. 1999)). A
principal purpose of summary judgment is “to isolate
and dispose of factually unsupported claims.”
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323-24
determining summary judgment, a court applies a
burden-shifting analysis. “When the party moving for
summary judgment would bear the burden of proof at trial, it
must come forward with evidence which would entitle it to a
directed verdict if the evidence went uncontroverted at
trial. In such a case, the moving party has the initial
burden of establishing the absence of a genuine issue of fact
on each issue material to its case.” C.A.R. Transp.
Brokerage Co. v. Darden Rests., Inc., 213 F.3d 474, 480
(9th Cir. 2000) (citations omitted). In contrast, when the
nonmoving party bears the burden of proving the claim or
defense, the moving party can meet its burden in two ways:
(1) by presenting evidence to negate an essential element of
the nonmoving party's case; or (2) by demonstrating that
the nonmoving party failed to make a showing sufficient to
establish an element essential to that party's case on
which that party will bear the burden of proof at trial.
See Celotex Corp., 477 U.S. at 323- 24. If the
moving party fails to meet its initial burden, summary
judgment must be denied and the court need not consider the
nonmoving party's evidence. See Adickes v. S.H. Kress
& Co., 398 U.S. 144, 159-60 (1970).
moving party satisfies its initial burden, the burden then
shifts to the opposing party to establish that a genuine
issue of material fact exists. See Matsushita Elec.
Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586
(1986). To establish the existence of a factual dispute, the
opposing party need not establish a material issue of fact
conclusively in its favor. It is sufficient that “the
claimed factual dispute be shown to require a jury or judge
to resolve the parties' differing versions of the truth
at trial.” T.W. Elec. Serv., Inc. v. Pac. Elec.
Contractors Ass'n, 809 F.2d 626, 631 (9th Cir.
1987). In other words, the nonmoving party cannot avoid
summary judgment by relying solely on conclusory allegations
that are unsupported by factual data. See Taylor v.
List, 880 F.2d 1040, 1045 (9th Cir. 1989). Instead, the
opposition must go beyond the assertions and allegations of
the pleadings and set forth specific facts by producing
competent evidence that shows a genuine issue for trial.
See Celotex Corp., 477 U.S. at 324.
summary judgment, a court's function is not to weigh the
evidence and determine the truth but to determine whether
there is a genuine issue for trial. See Anderson,
477 U.S. at 249. The evidence of the nonmovant is “to
be believed, and all justifiable inferences are to be drawn
in his favor.” Id. at 255. But if the evidence
of the nonmoving party is merely colorable or is not
significantly probative, summary judgment may be granted.
See Id. at 249-50.
states that “the Court need not resolve any factual
disputes[ ] because the doctrine of sovereign immunity bars
Plaintiff's suit in its entirety.” (MSJ 12:22-23).
“It is well settled that the United States is a
sovereign, and, as such, is immune from suit unless it has
expressly waived such immunity and consented to be
sued.” Gilbert v. DaGrossa, 756 F.2d 1455,
1458 (9th Cir. 1985); United States v. Shaw, 309
U.S. 495, 500-01 (1940); Hutchinson v. United
States, 677 F.2d 1322, 1327 (9th Cir. 1982); Beller
v. Middendorf, 632 F.2d 788, 796 (9th Cir. 1980),
cert. denied, 452 U.S. 905 (1981). Such waiver
cannot be implied, but must be unequivocally expressed.
United States v. King, 395 U.S. 1, 4 (1969). Where a
suit has not been consented to by the United States,
dismissal of the action is required. Hutchison, 677
F.2d at 1327. “It is axiomatic that the United States
may not be sued without its consent and that the existence of
such consent is a prerequisite for jurisdiction.”
United States v. Mitchell, 463 U.S. 206 (1983). The
party who sues the United States bears the burden of pointing
to such an unequivocal waiver of immunity. Holloman v.
Watt, 708 F.2d 1399, 1401 (9th Cir. 1983).
fails to point to any statutory waiver of sovereign immunity
in this case. Plaintiff asserts in his Complaint that the
Court has jurisdiction pursuant to 26 U.S.C. §§
6212(a) and 6213(a). (Compl. at 2). These statutes, however,
do not waive sovereign immunity for the United States.
the relief Plaintiff seeks is to have the Court
“declare that the Internal Revenue Services' . . .
tax assessments for the tax years 2006 - 2012 inclusive[ ]
are invalid.” (Id. at 1). The Declaratory
Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201, provides courts the
ability to declare the rights and “other legal
relations of any interested party seeking such
declaration” except with respect to federal taxes. 28
U.S.C. § 2201(a); see Handeland v. C. I. R.,
519 F.2d 327, 329 (9th Cir. 1975) (“Congress has barred
federal courts from giving declaratory judgments in tax
matters.”). Although Plaintiff seeks declaratory
relief, his cause of action centers solely around federal
taxes, therefore precluding him from using the ...