Tax liens (and their cousins, tax levies) are serious business if you owe taxes. Here are some tips on how they affect you, and how to get rid of tax liens.
What is a tax lien?
A tax lien is a legal claim made by the government on real estate or other assets when the owner is overdue for paying taxes. Municipalities can sell tax liens to investors paying their tax bills in exchange for the right to collect payments and interest from owners. If you do not process a federal tax lien, taxes may be levied next. Taxation is the actual seizure of property to pay taxes owed. Taxation can include things like garnishing your wages or confiscation of assets and bank accounts. (If you’re wondering how long it might take the IRS to notify you that you haven’t paid your taxes, read this.)
What will happen if you have a tax lien?
What could happen next if you owe your taxes and the IRS claims you with a federal tax lien. Your credibility may plummet. Tax Lien may no longer appear on credit reports, but the IRS can still file a notice of tax liens telling creditors that the government has rights over your property. That could jeopardize your ability to get a loan, says David Krasin, a CPA and tax attorney in Irvine, Calif. It could jeopardize home sales or refinance. Tax liens often surface during title searches. If you have equity in a home you are trying to sell or refinance, you may have to use some of it to pay taxes to close.
It will cost you a lot of time. Klasing warned that the IRS diverts many overdue taxpayers into its automated collection system, or ACS, which can mean waiting hours in call centers. He added that some taxpayers may be assigned to tax officials, which could mean in-person visits. You could end up being taxed. The IRS may issue a notice of intent to collect taxes if you do not pay the taxes you owe after you file a federal tax lien with the IRS.
How to Cancel a Tax Lien
Pay your tax bill. It may sound obvious, but in most cases, paying the taxes you owe is the only way to stop a tax lien or tax collection and the most interesting thing is that what I can tell you is to cooperate with the collection easily. If they want something, you give it to them. If they reach out to you, go back. Talk to them.
Join an IRS payment plan. Interest and penalties will still accrue on your tax balance until it’s paid off, but you may be able to convince the IRS if you allow the IRS to withdraw at least three consecutive payments from your bank account (called a direct debit installment agreement) Withdraw federal tax liens from public records. (You’ll still have to pay taxes, of course.) You don’t necessarily need to hire anyone to create a payment plan—you can apply directly on the IRS website. Fees range from $0 to $225, depending on the plan and your income.
Look for a compromise. This is an offer to settle your unpaid taxes for less than the full amount you have to pay. Note: There are many rules, and the IRS typically accepts less than half of the applications received in a year. Please consider that you have to file all Tax Shelter returns and pay the estimated tax amount required for the year. It also does not take into account if it is in bankruptcy or auditing. (See here for more information on how to do this.)
bring the action. If you would like to see Lien or your tax notice, you can ask the IRS Internal Revenue Service to hold a legitimate hearing. Also, if you disagree with the IRS employee’s decision regarding Lien or taxes, you can meet with the employee’s manager and ask the Appeals Department to review the case. bankruptcy. It’s not a great option, but in some cases, you can get rid of tax liabilities. However, Klasing warns that this is often a time-consuming process, has many rules, and does not always work.