Tax Penalties and Interest

The IRS imposes penalties for late payment of tax, for late filing of a tax return, or both. The IRS also charges interest on any unpaid tax. “Failure to File” and “Failure to Pay” penalties can increase tax debt very quickly. Due to this, it’s in your best interest to take care of tax debt issues as soon as possible.

Delinquent Payroll Tax

Payroll taxes refer to the Social Security tax and the Medicare tax. Social security taxes are designed to provide benefits for retired workers, the disabled, and the dependents of both. Medicare taxes are designed to provide medical benefits for individuals when they reach age 65. Social Security and Medicare must be filed properly, or the IRS may go after the company’s assets. In certain circumstances, the IRS can pursue company owners, officers, and specific employees if necessary to satisfy the delinquent taxes. If you, or someone else within your business is found to be willfully responsible for failure to pay payroll taxes, you could be held personally liable for a portion of the tax. Following an investigation and assessment of you and your employees, the IRS can begin collection efforts aimed at your personal assets. This includes bank accounts, property, and other assets. In some cases, the IRS may liquidate its assets in order to satisfy the tax debt.

Bank Levy

A bank levy is the technical term for the garnishment of a bank account. It is a method of collecting an unpaid debt, including back taxes,that can occur after a judgment has been issued in favor of a creditor. The immediate effect of a bank levy is that funds cannot be withdrawn from an account. Any check written against the account that attempts will be denied clearance, as will other electronic requests for funds Unlike wage garnishment, where state and federal rules limit the amount that can be taken by a creditor, bank accounts can be levied up to the full amount of the debt, even if it means emptying the account entirely. In the case of an IRS levy, your bank will be required to hold funds you have deposited up to the amount you owe the IRS for 21 days. After the holding period, the bank must send all funds directly to the IRS.

Federal Tax Liens

Tax liens give the IRS legal claim to your property. This is done to ensure funds made from the property are applied to your tax debt. The IRS will notify your creditors publicly, letting them know they have a claim against your property. A tax lien attaches to all of your property, and to all of your rights to property, such as accounts receivable, if you’re a business owner. The claim extends to property acquired after filing the tax lien as well. The IRS cautions that credit ratings have a chance of dropping once a lien is filed. It will be difficult to qualify for a loan, to buy a home, car, or apply for a new credit card. You may even be unable to sign a lease.

Unfiled Returns

The most important thing you can do to stay out of trouble with the IRS is to file your tax returns every year on time. And if you haven’t filed a return from any year over the past seven years, you can minimize penalties and interest by filing those unfiled returns sooner rather than later. Intentionally not filing your return is a federal crime. However, the IRS understands that mistakes happen and they give you a limited opportunity to file a past-due tax return and even amend to a tax return if you need to.

Wage Garnishment

The IRS sends a letter to a taxpayer’s employer requiring they withhold a portion of the employee’s pay and to be paid directly to the IRS or face penalties themselves. For the self-employed, the IRS sends the wage garnishment to the taxpayer’s accounts receivable. Money owed to you for services rendered is required to be sent to the IRS. The IRS can also levy your Federal and State payments, such as social security, welfare, or disability. An IRS wage levy will remain in place until the tax liability is paid or it is corrected through alternative solutions.

Tax Solutions

Administrative Appeals

If you are wrongly assessed tax, denied relief or subjected to collection activity, we are often able to resolve it favorably in the IRS administrative appeals process, without the need for the case proceeding to court.

Tax Litigation

We have the knowledge and experience to guide our clients through the tax litigation process with confidence.

Offer in Compromise

We offer a complete analysis of whether the client qualifies for this program, in which the client offers the IRS an amount that is less than what you owe. In some cases, this can save a client hundreds of thousands of dollars. In other cases, it will not be the correct approach to resolve the liability. We will do what is best for the client.

Currently Not Collectible Status

We frequently obtain this status for clients. Once obtained, the IRS will not pursue collections until the client’s financial situation changes.

Innocent Spouse Relief

When the IRS comes after a client, in a situation where it is unfair to hold them liable for their spouse or former spouse’s tax debt, we will help you obtain innocent spouse relief.

State Tax Cases

We are equipped to assist our clients with all state Department of Revenue tax cases.

IRS Whistleblower Reward

Our tax lawyers can help a client collect an IRS Whistleblower reward for reporting large cases of tax fraud. The reward is based on a percentage of the amount that the IRS collects using the information provided. We also litigate whistleblower claims that have been wrongly denied by the IRS.