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Washington, D. C., December 31, 1915. To officers of internal revenue and others:
The within decisions of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, rendered during the calendar year 1915, upon the construction to be given to the various acts of Congress relating to the internal revenue, are published for the information and guidance of officers of the internal revenue and others concerned.
This volume contains Treasury Decisions numbered 2113 to 2276, inclusive, and embraces all regulations and rulings of the Treasury Department made during the calendar year ended December 31, 1915, on the subject of the cotton futures act of August 18, 1914, the emergency revenue act of October 22, 1914, and the Harrison antinarcotic act of December 17, 1914, together with all regulations and rulings made during the calendar year 1915 on the subject of the income tax imposed by the act of October 3, 1913.
W. H. OSBORN, Commissioner of Internal Revenue.
(T. D. 2113.)
Emergency revenue law-Bills of lading.
Washington, D. C., January 5, 1916. To internal-revenue officers and others concerned:
The law makes it the duty of every railroad or steamship company, express company, carrier, or person whose occupation it is to act as such to issue to the shipper or consignor or his agent or person from whom any goods are accepted for transportation, where a charge exceeding 5 cents is made, a bill of lading, manifest, or other ovidence of receipt and forwarding. Any failure to issue such bill of lading, manifest, or other memorandum shall subject such railroad or steamship company, carrier, etc., to a penalty of $50 for each offense.
T. D. 2059, T. D. 2065, T. D. 2074, and T. D. 2092 and others have been issued from time to time in regard to the stamp tax on bills of lading.
The following additional rulings have been made:
(1) Only the original bill of lading requires a stamp. Duplicate bills of lading should have written or stamped thereon, “Original duly stamped," or words to that effect.
(2) When the charge does not exceed 5 cents, the bill of lading does not require a stamp.
(3) While it is the duty of the shipper under the law to pay the tax, this office holds the transportation company or carrier responsible jointly with the shipper in case the bill is not stamped.
(4) There is no objection to the carrier paying for the stamp and affixing it, or he can require the shipper to pay for the stamp and affix and cancel it.
(5) The law requires that the person affixing the stamp shall write or stamp thereon the initials of his name and the date upon which the stamp is attached or used, so that the same may not be used again. It is not intended, however, that the initials of the individual employee must be used. The initials of the principal for whom he acts will be sufficient. A rubber stamp may be used for
canceling the stamp or a machine or punch which will affix the initials and date aforesaid.
(6) In case of shipments from different consignors consigned to one commission merchant and included on one delivery slip, the stamps may be attached on the same slip in sufficient number to cover the shipments made by each individual to the commission merchant.
(7) A stamp is not required on each ticket covering the shipment of milk in cans. One stamp on each bill of lading or evidence of receipt and forwarding though covering two or more cans, if actually comprising only one shipment, each can having a ticket attached, will be sufficient.
(8) Any number of cars may be included in one shipment and if the contents are shipped to the same consignee at one time, and to the same place of destination, and are covered by one bill of lading one stamp only will be required.
(9) Where coal companies ship coal from mines in cars direct to the railroad weigher and the weigher weighs the coal and issues tickets, one for each car, each of those tickets requires a stamp if equivalent to a bill of lading, manifest, or other evidence of receipt and forwarding.
(10) The rule is that where a through bill of lading has been issued and stamped it should be sufficient, but a supplementary or intermediate bill of lading should state that the original was duly stamped.
(11) The practice of consolidating shipments of freight from different shippers consigned to different dealers, making what is called a "pool car," and billing all the shipments as one carload and affixing one revenue stamp does not comply with the law.
(12) Where bills of lading are exchanged for others under reconsignment the new bills of lading require stamps.
(13) Revenue stamps should be affixed to exchange bills of lading covering merchandise diverted in transit from original destination.
(14) Shippers by express or freight are not required to make returns under section 23 of the act.
(15) If a shipment is refused by the consignee and is returned to the consignor, a new bill of lading will be required for return of shipment.
(16) If a shipment is refused by a consignee and ordered shipped to another person, another stamp may be attached by the agent at the point to which originally consigned and cost thereof may be collected either from the consignor or from the person to whom reconsigned as the agent of the consignor.
(17) If one shipment comprises so many different articles that it requires more than one of the forms generally used to enumerate