Federal Tax Collection: Information About Rules and Processes

For People Dealing With an IRS Collection Problem

This site provides information about rules and processes involved in the collection of unpaid federal tax. To become acquainted with the allowable solutions to address payment of a federal tax debt is sometimes the best way to obtain a prompt and appropriate outcome. Rules that apply are often hard to locate and difficult to learn. The purpose of this information-blog is to collect and present a growing body of articles dealing with a wide variety of pertinent issues and subjects. These writings are offered for review to assist readers starting the process of comprehending the situation, the rules that apply and the alternatives that are allowed under the law. Articles being added to this collection will discuss such areas as -

  • audit reconsideration;
  • the significance of various IRS letters and notices;
  • how the IRS analyzes a taxpayer’s ability to pay;
  • how the IRS locates assets;
  • criminal statutes applicable when a taxpayer attempts to conceal or mislead IRS to avoid paying tax;
  • special Collection Due Process protections and what taxpayers must be prepared to prove;
  • liens;
  • levy and seizure;
  • installment agreements, partial payment installment agreements, offers in compromise;
  • defending against the trust fund recovery penalty (the “100% penalty” to collect amounts withheld from employees’ paychecks); and, other items.

Readers will find links to many resources such as various parts of the Internal Revenue Manuals, various US Attorney Manuals (e.g., tax crimes, collecting on judgments, summons enforcement and etc.) the online text of opinions from the courts, IRS Publications and guideline resources, and other helpful items.

IRS is not much different from any other creditor. When a debt is unpaid creditors tend to select all appropriate methods to collect. IRS is no different and is charged to collect the greatest amount possible in the least possible time and at the least cost. To facilitate collection, in most cases IRS will very quickly approve a Streamlined installment agreement where the total debt (tax, penalty and interest) is under $25,000. Usually there is no need to engage professional help to work out a satisfactory arrangement under a Streamlined Installment Agreement. Taxpayers who do not qualify for the simplified Streamlined program face a more difficult task. There are solutions available, but the rules that govern collections are complicated. Taxpayers who do not engage professional help should obtain a basic understanding of the rules in order to know what is permitted and possible when working out the payment of an unpaid federal tax debt.

For Readers Who Need Access to Full Texts of the Law

I have also constructed a web site that provides a research tool for researchers who need a connection to the statutes, regulations, specific locations in the Internal Revenue Manual and other hard-to-find authorities. You may connect with that organized presentation at Federal Tax Collection Rules and Procedures.

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