It is no secret that the IRS has stepped up collection enforcement of past due taxes. They have been very aggressive lately about attempting to collect taxes that are past due. We have also noticed an increase in the number of audits being conducted.
What this means to taxpayers is that once the IRS has sent out the notices required before pursuing forced collection, the time period is very short before they start seizures.
The Internal Revenue Service has powerful tools at its disposal for the collection of taxes. The main way the IRS collects past due taxes is through levies. They also can file liens that affect taxpayers.
A levy is an actual seizure of an asset. The two main assets seized by the IRS are bank accounts and wages.
When the IRS serves a Notice of Levy on a bank account, the bank must freeze any money in the account when the levy hits and after a period of time turn the money over to the IRS. It does not matter if there are outstanding checks written against the funds. They are frozen and turned over to the IRS. If there is a levy of a bank account, prompt action may result in the release of the funds.
A wage levy is one of the most devastating things that can happen to a taxpayer. The IRS can seize the majority of a taxpayer’s earnings, leaving them without enough to live on. Worse yet, a wage levy is continuous and remains in effect until the whole tax liability is paid or until the levy is lifted by action of the taxpayer’s representative.
We can help! We routinely are able to get levies lifted if they do not leave the taxpayer with enough income to pay necessary living expenses. It is a complicated process to get a levy lifted in most cases. There are a number of steps which must be taken to obtain a levy release.
There is no doubt that the Internal Revenue Service has incredible power to collect taxes. Where a regular creditor must obtain a judgment to levy against someone, the IRS doesn’t have that restriction. After sending the necessary notices, they are free to start collection by seizure of assets.
The single most important thing a taxpayer can do if they have a large tax liability is to obtain a competent tax attorney to assist them.