Division of Tax Appeals

The Division of Tax Appeals, in contrast to BCMS, is an autonomous unit of the Department of Taxation and is independent of the Commissioner of Taxation and Finance. The Administrative Law Judges who preside over hearings at the Division of Tax Appeals are experienced and impartial. Still, the Department of Taxation has an advantage in the Division of Tax Appeals, since tax laws are construed narrowly and in favor of the government. Hearings are held at the offices of the Division of Tax Appeals, located at 500 Federal Street, in Albany. The majority disputes with the Department of Taxation heard today involve sales tax.  Decisions of the Tax Appeals Tribunal, the Appellate Division, Court of Appeals, or United States district or appeals courts sitting in New York may be cited as authority for the taxpayer’s case. However, the doctrine of staré decisis has no application to cases decided by Administrative Law Judges. Accordingly, those determinations have no precedential value and may not be cited as authority in any brief. In the 2009-2010 fiscal year, Administrative Law Judges sustained 80.2 percent of the deficiencies  or other action asserted by the Department of Taxation; they cancelled 9.4 percent of the deficiencies or other action; and they modified 10.4 percent of the deficiencies or other action. New York State Division of Tax Appeals, Annual Report Fiscal Year 2009-2010.