Finding Guide for Federal Tax Materials
in the Gallagher Law Library

Legal Research Guides

Updated Sept. 9, 2013.
Prepared by Cheryl Nyberg. Updated by Robyn Hagle (2006) & Jennifer Locke (2004).
 

Research Guides

Several of these research guides include explanations of the many IRS written determinations, including their precedential value.

"Federal Income Taxation," Chapter 3, in Specialized Legal Research. KF240.S63 1987 at Reference Area & Reference Office

Federal Tax Research: Guide to Materials and Techniques, 8th ed. KF241.T38R5 2010 at Reference Area & Reference Office

Federal Tax Research, 2d ed. KF241.T38 L37 2011 at Reference Area

TaxCite: A Federal Tax Citation and Reference Manual. KF245.T39 1995 at Reference Office

Tax Research. KF241.T38K37 2000 at Reference Office

U.S. Federal Tax Research (Tax Management Portfolio 100). KF6289.A1 T35 100 at Reference Area. BNA Tax and Accounting Center; UW Restricted)

West's Federal Tax Research, 6th ed. KF241.T38R33 2003 at Reference Office

Wolters Kluwer / CCH, Tax Research: Understanding Sources of Tax Law, is a series of online tutorials that cover an overview, federal laws and legislation, Treasury regulations, the judicial system, and IRS rulings and pronouncements.

Acronyms, Abbreviations & Titles

The following sources are available to Gallagher Law Library users and others who have appropriate subscriptions:

  • Government websites are free to all users.
  • Print publications are available to all users who visit the Law Library.
  • LexisNexis and Westlaw are commercial databases available only to users with passwords and IDs. The Gallagher Law Library does not provide public access to either LexisNexis or Westlaw.
  • BNA and RIA Checkpoint are commercial services that are available to all users who visit the Law Library (and to University of Washington faculty, students, and staff via the Off-Campus Access link at the top of this page). Go to the Legal Databases & Indexes page for links to these services.
  • HeinOnline and LLMC Digital are commercial services that provides PDF images of selected documents. These documents are available to all users who visit the Law Library and to University of Washington faculty, students, and staff [UW Restricted].

Note: Contents and dates of coverage may vary from the information provided here. See also the Databases section below.

A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z

Acq = Notice of Acquiescence
Notice as to whether the IRS will follow a court holding, derived from Actions on Decisions.
Published in the Cumulative Bulletin.

  • BNA Tax Core > By Document Type > IRS Acquiescences: 1998 -

AOD = Actions on Decisions
Memoranda prepared when the IRS loses a court case that recommends what, if any, action  the IRS should take in response. The action can be appealing or not appealing the adverse decision OR acquiescing or not acquiescing in that decision.

AFTR = American Federal Tax Reports, 1st and 2d Series, 1923 - . KF6280.A2 P7 at Reference Area
A commercial reporter containing federal tax cases heard in the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Courts of Appeals, the U.S. District Courts, and the U.S. Court of Claims. Does not include cases heard by the U.S. Tax Court.

  • RIA Checkpoint: 1860 -
  • Westlaw: RIA-AFTR, 1880 -

Blue Books = Joint Committee on Taxation, General Explanation of Tax Legislation Enacted . . . . KF6275.J65 at Classified Stacks.

  • RIA Checkpoint: 1995 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-BLUEBOOKS, 1976, 1981, 1982, 1986, 1991, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001 -

BTA = Reports of the United States Board of Tax Appeals, 1924-42. KF6324.A5 at Reference Area
Continues as Reports of the Tax Court of the United States (1942-69).

C.B. = Cumulative Bulletin, 1922 - . KF6282.A2 I5 at Reference Area
A cumulation of the weekly Internal Revenue Bulletin, which is "the authoritative instrument of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue for announcing official rulings and procedures of the Internal Revenue Service and for publishing Treasury Decisions, Executive Orders, Tax Conventions, legislation, court decisions, and other items of general interest."

CBS Bull. = Collection, Bankruptcy, and Summonses Bulletins
Contains "summaries of recent court cases of interest to anyone handling general litigation issues, plus summaries of Chief Counsel Advice." Previously called the General Litigation Bulletin.

  • BNA Tax Core > By Document Type > IRS Collection, Bankruptcy and Summonses Bulletins: 1998 -
  • IRS: July 2000 - Jan. 2002

C.C.A. = Chief Counsel Advice
"[W]ritten advice or instructions prepared by the Office of Chief Counsel and issued to field or service center employees of the IRS or Office of Chief Counsel." http://www.irs.gov/foia/article/0,,id=138707,00.html

  • BNA Tax Core > By Document Type > IRS Chief Counsel Advice Memorandums: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1999 -
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;CCA, Nov. 1998 -
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1994 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-CCA, 1999 -

Chief Counsel Notices
Policies, procedures, instructions, and delegations of authority announced to Chief Counsel personnel.

  • BNA Tax Core > By Document Type > IRS Chief Counsel Notices: 1999 -
  • IRS website: March 2000 -
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;IRSCCN, July 1998 -

CFR = Code of Federal Regulations. KF70.A3 at Reference Area (current year); previous at Compact Stacks
In-force regulations of federal government agencies, including the IRS (Title 26).

Cl. Ct. = United States Claims Court Reporter, 1982-92. KF125.C5C53 at Compact Stacks
Continues as Federal Claims Reporter.

  • BNA Tax Management Library
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;CLAIMS
  • Westlaw: FEDCL, 1945 -

CT Bull = Criminal Tax Bulletin
Describes recent criminal tax cases.

  • BNA Tax Core > By Document Type > IRS Criminal Tax Bulletins: 1998 -
  • IRS: Dec. 1998 -

Ct. Cl. = Court of Claims Reports, 1856-1982. KF125.C5C52 at Reference Area & Reference Area Microfiche

Daily Tax Rep. = Daily Tax Report
A commercial newsletter containing news and commentary.

  • BNA Tax Management Library: Oct. 1994 -
  • LexisNexis:
  • Westlaw:

Deleg. Order = delegation order
Issued when the Commissioner of the IRS delegates a portion of his/her statutory authority.
Published in the Cumulative Bulletin.

  • RIA Checkpoint: 1956 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-DO, 1954 -

Determination letters
A written statement replying to a taxpayer's request for information on the tax consequences of a specific action. Similar to private letter rulings, but issued by an IRS field office instead of the National office.

Disclosure litigation bulletins
Publications of the Office of the Assistant Chief Counsel (Disclosure & Privacy Law), “providing litigation developments and discussion of other disclosure-related issues that arise primarily under I.R.C. 6103, the Freedom of Information Act , and the Privacy Act of 1974 , as these issues relate to Internal Revenue Service and Chief Counsel operations."

  • IRS: 1997 - July 2000

Exemption rulings
A form letter that recognizes tax exemptiosn under the Internal Revenue Code. Exemption rulings are issued by the IRS’s Exempt Organizations Technical Division.

F.2d, F.3d = Federal Reporter, 2d series; Federal Reporter, 3d series. KF105.F432. vols. 801 -  at Reference Area; previous volumes at Compact Stacks
Contains opinions of the U.S. Courts of Appeals. Tax-related cases also reprinted in American Federal Tax Reports.

  • BNA Tax Core > By Document Type > Courts: Federal Courts: tax cases only, 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: tax cases only
  • LexisNexis: USAPP, 1789 -
  • Westlaw: CTA, 1945 - ; CTA-OLD, 1891-1944

F.Supp., F.Supp.2d = Federal Supplement, 1933-88; Federal Supplement, 2d series, 1988 - . KF120.F42, vol. 671 -  at Reference Area; vol. 1-670 at Compact Stacks
Contains opinions of the U.S. District Courts. Significant tax-related cases also reprinted in American Federal Tax Reports.

  • BNA Tax Core > By Document Type > Courts: Federal Courts: tax cases only, 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: tax cases only
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;DIST, 1789 -
  • Westlaw: DCT, 1945 - ; DCT-OLD, 1789-1944

Fed. Cl. = Federal Claims Reporter, 1992 - . KF125.C5C53 at Compact Stacks

  • BNA Tax Management Library
  • LexisNexis: CLAIMS
  • Westlaw: FEDCL

Fed. Reg., F.R. = Federal Register, 1936 - . KF70.A2, last 2 years at Reference Area; previous at Compact Stacks
Proposed and adopted regulations of federal agencies. In-force regulations published in the Code of Federal Regulations.

F.S.A. = Field Service Advice memoranda

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1999 -
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;FSA FEDTAX;IRSCCN 1992 -
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1991-2002
  • Westlaw: FTX-FSA, 1976-91, incomplete; 1992 -

GCM, Gen. Couns.Mem.= General Counsel's Memoranda.
Memoranda generated upon request to provide internal guidance in the preparation of external documents, such as revenue rulings and letter rulings.
Published in Internal Memoranda of the IRS and IRS Positions (not available at the Gallagher Law Library)

H.Rept. = House Reports
Reports of U.S. House of Representatives committees. Compiled in the Congressional Serial Set, J66.U57 at Reference Area
Selected reports on tax legislation published in the Cumulative Bulletin.

I.R.B. = Internal Revenue Bulletin, KF6282.A2 I5  at Reference Area
"[T]he authoritative instrument of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue for announcing official rulings and procedures of the Internal Revenue Service and for publishing Treasury Decisions, Executive Orders, Tax Conventions, legislation, court decisions, and other items of general interest."
Weekly issues compiled twice a year into the Cumulative Bulletin.

I.R.C. =  Internal Revenue Code. KF6276.526.A19I57, current at Reference Area; previous editions at Classified Stacks
The primary statutory source of federal tax law, a collection of laws passed by Congress and incorporated in Title 26 of the United States Code. The IRC was last extensively revised in 1986. Thus, the current code is known as the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. However, the statute still follows the 1954 numbering system and organization

  • BNA Tax Management Library: currrent
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;CODE
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1990 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-USCA, current

I.R.M. = Internal Revenue Manual. KF6301.A6C64 at Reference Area
IRS employees' manual of procedures, policies, and operational guidelines.

I.R.-News Release = Internal Revenue news (press) releases
Issued by the IRS Public Affairs Office "whenever there is information of importance that needs to be released to the public. Many News Releases pertain to tax treatment of items that you will either be deducting, expensing, or including as income on your tax return.”
Published in the Cumulative Bulletin and the Standard Federal Tax Reporter, KF6285.C67, current at Reference Area; previous at Compact Stacks

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1981 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-NR, 1981 -

IRS Mem. = IRS memoranda
Published in Internal Memoranda of the IRS (not available at the Gallagher Law Library)

  • BNA: May - Sept. 1999

IRS Pos. = IRS Positions (CCH). Not available at the Gallagher Law Library.

Information letters
Response to a taxpayer's request on a settled tax question.

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-INFO, 2000 -

LTR = letter rulings
Responses to specific requests from taxpayers on the tax consequences of specific actions. Also known as private letter rulings.
 Published in IRS Letter Rulings, KF6282.A2C6 at Reference Area

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1980 -
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;PLR, 1954 -
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1953 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-PLR, 1954 -

Litigation bulletins
“Contain summaries of recent tax cases on bankruptcy, levies, liens, limitations, penalties, and summonses. They also alert district counsel about various IRS policies and procedures. Bulletins were published under this name from 1986 to 2000.”

Litigation guideline memoranda

  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX:LGM, 1986 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-LGM, 1999 - 2004

Nonacq. = nonacquiescence
Notice as to whether the IRS will follow a court holding, derived from Actions on Decisions.
Published in the Cumulative Bulletin.

PH Memo TC = T.C. Memorandum Decisions, 1928 (RIA). KF6324.A513P7 at Reference Area

PLR, Priv. Ltr. Rul. = private letter ruling
Responses to specific equests from taxpayers on the tax consequences of specific actions.
Published in IRS Letter Rulings.

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1980 -
  • IRS, 1997- (selected)
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1953 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-PLR, 1954 -

Reg. = Treasury Regulations
Published in the Federal Register and the Cumulative Bulletin.

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: Aug. 1995 -
  • RIA Checkpoint

Rev. Proc. = revenue procedure
Procedures and guidance  affecting the rights and duties of taxpayers.
Published in the Cumulative Bulletin.

  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1960
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1955 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-RP, 1954 -

Rev. Rul. = revenue ruling
Position of the IRS interpreting or applying the law to a hypothetical set of facts.
Published in the Cumulative Bulletin and the Standard Federal Tax Reporter.,

  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1960
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1954 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-RR, 1954 -

S. Rept. = Senate reports
Reports of U.S. Senate  committees. Compiled in the Congressional Serial Set, J66.U57 at Reference Area
Selected reports on tax legislation published in the Cumulative Bulletin.

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • GPO Access: 1995 -
  • RIA Checkpoint:
  • Westlaw: FTX-LH, 1948 -

SCA = Service Center Advice
"[D]ocuments prepared by Field attorneys in the Office of Chief Counsel that are reviewed by an Associate Office, and subsequently issued to field or service center campus employees." Not to be be used or cited as precedent.

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1999 -
  • IRS
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;SCA, 1997 -
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1997-2003
  • Westlaw: FTX-SCA, 1999 -

Stand. Fed. Tax Rep. = Standard Federal Tax Reporter (CCH). KF6285.C67, current at Reference Area; previous at Compact Stacks

TAM = technical advice memoranda
"[W]ritten memoranda furnished by the National Office of the IRS upon request of a district director or chief appeals officer pursuant to annual review procedures." Provide guidance to IRS staff.
Published in IRS Letter Rulings.

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1980 -
  • IRS
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;PLR, 1954 -
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1953 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-TAM, 1954 -

Tax Mgmt. = Tax Management Portfolios.  KF6289.A1T35 at Reference Area

  • BNA Tax Management Library: current
  • LexisNexis:
  • Westlaw: TM-ALL

Tax Notes. KF6285.T36, last 3 years  at Reference Area; previous at Classified Stacks
A weekly magazine contains articles, commentary, news, and reports;  published by Tax Analysts.

T.C. = Reports of the Tax Court of the United States, 1942-69. KF6324.A512 at Reference Area
Continues Reports of the United States Board of Tax Appeals (1924-42) and continued by Reports of the United States Tax Court.

T.C.M. = Tax Court Memorandum Decisions (CCH). KF6324.A513C6 at Reference Area

  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;TCM, 1942 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-TCT, 1942 -

T.C. Memo = TC Memorandum Decisions (RIA). KF6324.A513P7 at Reference Area

  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;TCM, 1942 -
  • RIA Checkpoint: 1928 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-TCT, 1942 -

TD = Treasury Decisions
Final or temporary regulations issued by the IRS. Often include preambles or explanations.
Published in the Cumulative Bulletin and the Federal Register.

  • BNA Tax Management Library: May 2003 -
  • LexisNexis:
  • Westlaw: FTX-TD, 1954 -

TDO = Treasury Department Orders
Treasury Department comments on its role over the IRS, selected  publication in the Internal Revenue Bulletin.

TEAM = technical expedited advice memoranda
Expedited advice and guidance to IRS staff. Related to TAMs.

  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library: 1999 -

TIR = technical information release
Public guidance on technical developments.

T.M. = technical memoranda
Published in IRS Positions (not available at the Gallagher Law Library).

  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;TM, 1967 -
  • Westlaw: FTX-TM, 1967 -

Treasury Department orders

Treas. Reg. = Treasury Regulations
In-force regulations issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury (of which the Internal Revenue Service is a part).
Published in the Code of Federal Regulations and the  Federal Tax Regulations, KF6301.A4 at Classified Stacks

UIL = Uniform Issue List
List of particular legal topics on which the Office of the Chief Counsel issues written determinations.

U.S. Tax Rep. = United States Tax Reporter (RIA). KF6285.U54 at Reference Area

USTC = U.S. Tax Cases, 1935 -  (CCH). KF6280.A2C63 at Reference Area
Contains tax cases reported in the Standard Federal Tax Reporter

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Looseleaf Services

Federal Tax Coordinator 2d (RIA). KF6285.F43 at Reference Area.

Standard Federal Tax Reporter (CCH). KF6285.C67 at Reference Area, current edition & Compact Stacks, previous editions

United States Tax Reporter (RIA). KF6285.U54 1992 at Reference Area

Legislative Histories

The Internal Revenue Acts, 1954 - . KF6276 at Reference Area. Hein Online: Revenue Act of 1954 with Legislative Histories and Congressional Documents. UW Restricted

Tax Management Primary Sources. KF6365.B87 at Reference Area

Seidman's Legislative History of Federal Income Tax Laws, 1938-1861. KF6356.55.A16 S44 at Classified Stacks. Hein Online.

For additional information, see the Gallagher guide on Federal Legislative History.

Forms & Publications

  • Bender's . . . Tax Return Manual. KF6289.A1B46 at Reference Area
  • Package X: Reference Copies of Federal Tax Forms and Instructions. KF6301.A65U5 at Reference Area, last 3 years & Classified Stacks, previous
  • Reproducible Copies of Federal Tax Forms and Instructions. KF6301.A65U52 at Reference Area, current & Classified Stacks, previous. IRS
  • Also, UW Libraries, Allen Information Desk; Seattle Public Library (main and many branches), IRS Office (Federal Building, 915 2d Ave.)
  • Westlaw: FEDFORMS-TCT: Forms related to practice before the U.S. Tax Court

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Databases

In addition to the specific databases for individual types of IRS pronouncements and written determinations, several commercial services offer group databases containing several types of documents. Each service also has some unique databases. Check the online and print directories for more information.

BNA Tax Core

Contains other types of IRS and Treasury documents in addition to those listed above, including announcements, audit correspondence, audit technique guidelines, Chief Counsel notices, comment letters, coordinated issue papers, employee plans work plan, energy, exemption denial and revocation letters, fact sheets, FOIA letters, hearing transcripts, industry directives, internal memoranda, legal advice issued by field attorneys, list of required modifications, notices, reports, settlement guide, statements of Administration policy, and  transcripts.

BNA Tax Management Library

  • IRS Documents
    • Revenue Rulings, Revenue  Procedures, Notices and Announcements
    • Private Letter Rulings, Technical Advice Memoranda, Technical Expedited Advice Memoranda, Chief Counsel Advice, Field Service Advice and Service Center Advice
    • Private Letter Rulings and Technical Advice Memoranda

LexisNexis

  • FEDTAX;RELS, Federal tax releases: A group file consisting of the Internal Revenue Bulletin/Cumulative Bulletin, including revenue rulings and procedures (CB) Private Letter Rulings/Technical Advice Memorandums (PLR) General Counsel Memorandums (GCM) Actions on Decisions (AOD) Technical Memorandums (TM)Field Service Advice (FSA) Service Center Advice (SCA) Chief Counsel Advice (CCA) Litigation Guideline Memorandums (LGM) General Litigation Bulletins (GLB) Criminal Tax Bulletins (CTB) Tax Litigation Bulletins (TLB) Chief Counsel Notices (IRSCCN).
  • FEDTAX:MEMOS, Federal tax memos: A group file consisting of memos from the IRS including General Counsel Memoranda, Actions on Decisions, Technical Memoranda, Field Service Advice, Service Center Advice, Chief Counsel Advice, Tax Litigation Bulletins, Litigation Guideline Memorandums, Criminal Tax Bulletins and General Litigation Memorandums.
  • FEDTAX;CBPLR: Combines the Internal Revenue Bulletin/Cumulative Bulletin file (CB) and the Private Letter Ruling/Technical Advice Memorandum file (PLR).

RIA Checkpoint

Contains other types of IRS and Treasury documents in addition to those listed above, including a case and ruling citator, Tax Court rules, Treasury Department circulars,

Westlaw

  • FTX-CS: Tax-related cases from the U.S. Supreme Court, the Courts of Appeals, the District Courts, the Tax Court, and the Court of Federal Claims; 1789 -
  • FTX-TCT: Decisions, memoradum decisions, and summary opinions from the Tax Court and the Board of Tax Appeals; 1924 -
  • FTX-RLS, IRS combined releases: Combines materials from the following databases: IRS Cumulative Bulletins, Written Determinations, and News Releases (FTX-CBWD), IRS Memoranda and Actions on Decisions (FTX-MEMOS), Industry Specialization Program (FTX-ISP), IRS Market Segment Specialization Program (FTX-MSSP), IRS Exemption Rulings (FTX-EXEMPT), IRS Information Letters (FTX-INFO), and IRS Miscellaneous Documents (FTX-IRSMISC).
  • FTX-CBWD: Combines documents from the following databases: IRS Written Determinations (FTX-WD), IRS Cumulative Bulletins (FTX-CB), and IRS News Releases (FTX-NR).
  • FTX-MEMOS: Combines materials from the following databases: IRS General Counsel Memoranda (FTX-GCM), IRS Actions on Decisions (FTX-AOD), IRS Technical Memoranda (FTX-TM), IRS Litigation Bulletins (FTX-LB), and IRS Litigation Guideline Memoranda (FTX-LGM).
  • FTX-WD, IRS Written Determinations: Combines documents from databases containing written determinations issued by the Internal Revenue Service: private letter rulings (FTX-PLR), technical advice memoranda (FTX-TAM), chief counsel advice (FTX-CCA), field service advice (FTX-FSA), litigation bulletins (FTX-LB), litigation guideline memoranda (FTX-LGM), nondocketed service advice reviews (FTX-NSAR), service center advice (FTX-SCA), and information letters (FTX-INFO).
  • FTX-BLUEBOOKS, Joint Committee on Taxation's General Explanation of Tax Legislation (commonly called the Blue Books). Issues for 1986, 1996, 1997, 1998, and 2001.

Websites

Internal Revenue Service: Downloadable tax forms and publications, news releases, and regulations. TaxLinks, a searchable database of revenue rulings, 1954 -

TaxSites, Federal Tax Law

Tax Treaties

  • Tax Treaties (CCH). KF6306.C62 at Reference Area
  • IRS
  • BNA Tax Core: 1998 -
  • BNA Tax Management Library
  • LexisNexis: FEDTAX;TAWTT: Contains worldwide tax treaties from Tax Analysts.
  • Westlaw: FTX-TREATIES. Contains tax treaties and conventions published in the Cumulative Bulletin, 1955 - , and tax treaties from U.S. Treaties in Force, 1844 - .

Quotations

Jeffrey L. Yablon periodically publishes "As Certain as Death: Quotations about Taxes," a collection of quotations about taxes in Tax Notes (KF6285 .T36, last 3 years at Reference Area; older issues at Classified Stacks).. The most recent collection, 102 Tax Notes 99 (Jan. 5, 2004), is available on Lexis.

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