2015 ORS 305.190¹
Subpoenaing and examining witnesses, books and papers
  • application to tax court for disobeyance of subpoena

(1) Subject to ORS 305.390 (Subpoenas of records containing information on industrial plant for use to determine value of different industrial plant) and 305.392 (Process for limiting scope of third-party subpoena), the Director of the Department of Revenue, in conformity to the resolutions or rules of the Department of Revenue, may subpoena and examine witnesses, administer oaths and order the production of any books or papers in the hands of any person, company or corporation, whenever necessary in the prosecution of any inquiries deemed necessary or proper.

(2) If any person disobeys any subpoena of the director, or refuses to testify when required by the director, the department may apply to the Oregon Tax Court for an order to the person to produce the books and papers or attend and testify, or otherwise comply with the demand of the department. The application to the court shall be by ex parte motion upon which the court shall make an order requiring the person against whom it is directed to appear before the court in the county in which the person resides or has a place of business on such date as the court shall designate in its order and show cause why the person should not comply with the demand of the department. The order shall be served upon the person to whom it is directed in the manner required by this state for service of process, which service shall be required to confer jurisdiction upon the court. Upon failure of such person to show cause for noncompliance, the court shall make an order requiring the person to comply with the demand of the department within such time as the court shall direct. Failure to obey any order issued by the court under this section is contempt of court. The remedy provided by this section shall be in addition to other remedies, civil or criminal, existing under the tax laws or other laws of this state.

(3) ORS 305.420 (Issuance of subpoenas) (4) applies to the issuance of a subpoena under this section. [Formerly 306.190; 1977 c.884 §4; 1981 c.139 §7; 1993 c.353 §5; 2003 c.46 §3; 2005 c.345 §3]

Notes of Decisions

In cases where Depart­ment of Revenue seeks to sub­poe­na various records of a taxpayer and taxpayer refuses to comply, depart­ment may apply to the Oregon Tax Court for an order that taxpayer produce records or attend and testify or otherwise comply with the depart­ment's demand. In re Eola Concrete Tile and Products Co., 8 OTR 128 (1979), aff'd 288 Or 241, 603 P2d 1181 (1979)

Oregon Constitu­tion limits authority of Depart­ment of Revenue to sub­poe­na records to extent that depart­ment seeks records relevant to lawful investiga­tion and issues sub­poe­na no broader than needs of particular investiga­tion. Dept. of Rev. v. D.R. Johnson Lbr. Co., 289 Or 679, 617 P2d 603 (1980); Dept. of Rev. v. Universal Foods Corp., 12 OTR 231 (1992), aff'd 318 Or 78, 862 P2d 1288 (1993)

Depart­ment inquiries and ac­tions taken in furtherance of inquiries are "necessary" if relevant to purposes of lawful investiga­tion and objective of demonstrable, practical need. State ex rel Dept. of Rev. v. Capital Shelters, 295 Or 561, 668 P2d 1214 (1983)

Depart­ment of Revenue is not re­quired to pass rules interpreting statute prior to issuing sub­poe­na. Dept. of Rev. v. Universal Foods Corp., 318 Or 78, 862 P2d 1288 (1993)

Subpoena power is not limited to in­for­ma­­tion located in Oregon nor to Oregon resident enterprises. Dept. of Rev. v. Universal Foods Corp., 318 Or 78, 862 P2d 1288 (1993)

Chapter 305

Notes of Decisions

Policy of efficient and effective tax collec­tion makes doctrine of estoppel against govern­ment in tax cases one of rare applica­tion. Pacific Conference v. Dept. of Rev., 7 OTR 429 (1978)

Law Review Cita­tions

9 WLJ 193-260 (1973); 48 WLR 147 (2011)


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 305—Administration of Revenue and Tax Laws; Appeals, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors305.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2015, Chapter 305, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano305.­html (2015) (last ac­cessed Jul. 16, 2016).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.