Los Angeles, Ca, January 3, 2017 – Coinbase, Inc. customer and attorney Jeffrey K. Berns, the Managing Partner of Berns Weiss LLP, filed a reply in response to the IRS’s response to his motion to intervene and to quash a John Doe summons served by the IRS on Coinbase, Inc. The reply can be viewed here.

The reply counters the Government’s argument that Mr. Berns’ motion is moot because on December 27, 2016 the IRS withdrew the summons as to Mr. Berns only, even though it has not obtained any of the documents or information sought by the summons with respect to Mr. Berns. Mr. Berns contends that the court should reject the Government’s attempt to artificially moot the motion because it does not want the Court to scrutinize its actions in pursuing this improper summons.

Mr. Berns also argues that the John Doe summons statute does not allow the Government to shield itself from inquiries into whether it has acted in good faith. He further contends that the Court should reconsider its decision to permit the Government to serve the IRS summons when there are still numerous questions concerning the Government’s motives for seeking the identities of, and documents pertaining to, all of Coinbase’s U.S. customers.

The motion is currently scheduled to be heard on January 19, 2017. 

Coinbase has said it is committed to customer privacy and will oppose the Government’s efforts to obtain customer information. However, Coinbase does not need to take any action unless and until the Government commences a proceeding to enforce the summons.  Berns Weiss LLP and Mr. Berns are committed to protecting the rights of Coinbase’s customers.  In addition to pursuing the current motion, they are prepared to seek to intervene on behalf of Mr. Berns and/or additional Coinbase customers who have already contacted the firm and expressed their willingness to fight the summons in any enforcement proceeding that the Government files.

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Berns Weiss is ideally positioned to protect the rights of the individuals who participate in the developing virtual currency/blockchain eco-system. Its partners have decades of experience protecting the rights of consumers, employees, retirees and investors through class action litigation in federal and state court.  The firm’s Virtual Currency and Blockchain Technology practice group is staffed by attorneys that have developed the necessary experience and expertise to guide individuals and businesses working on virtual currency and blockchain applications through the existing legal labyrinth. For more information, contact info@law111.com.


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