DC court dismisses lawsuit seeking Trump's tax returns

A three-judge panel on the federal court of appeals in D.C. denied a non-profit’s attempt to force the IRS to release President TrumpDonald TrumpFormer New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver dead at 77 Biden, Democrats losing ground with independent and suburban voters: poll Bipartisan Senate group discusses changes to election law MORE’s tax returns.

In an unanimous riling, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals said not all records can be accessed by the public through a Freedom of Information Act request and affirmed a lower court’s decision to dismiss the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)’s lawsuit, which sought Trump’s income tax records.


“No one can demand to inspect another’s tax records,” Karen LeCraft Henderson, a George H.W. Bush appointee, said in the court’s majority ruling.

“And the IRC [Internal Revenue Code]’s confidentiality protections extend to the ordinary taxpayer and the President alike.”

The law mandates that tax “returns and return information shall be confidential” unless they fall within one of the statute’s narrowly drawn exceptions.

Through Freedom of Information Act requests, EPIC sought Trump’s individual income tax returns from 2010 on and “any other indications of financial relations with the Russian government or Russian businesses,” according to court documents. 

In declining to provide them, IRS said tax return or return information of a third party cannot be disclosed unless authorized by law or the person’s consent.