What Happens If I Have Tax Debt That Cant Be Erased Yet
Plenty of taxpayers are in this boat, and they all have several legal options. An attorney can advise you on the best course of action, but ultimately, the decision is yours.
Pay in installments. Some people talk to the IRS about a payment plan. The IRS usually backs off once the taxpayer starts an installment agreement. After all, the IRS just wants the money. It doesn’t really want to garnish your wages. Keep in mind that installment agreements are only a good idea if you have the money. If thatâs not the case, you need another option.
Participate in the Offer in Compromise program. The IRS has many programs to help taxpayers pay their tax debt when they have little or no money. The main example is the Offer in Compromise program where taxpayers pay what they can, and the IRS forgives the rest. This program can be extremely complex, and few people qualify. Also, if the taxpayer has any assets whatsoever the IRS will force the taxpayer to sell them. Finally, while the taxpayer negotiates, the IRSâs harassing collections techniques continue.
What Are The Penalties For Not Paying Back Taxes
There are IRS penalties and interest for late payments and for late filing.
- The late-payment penalty is 0.5% per month or partial month that a tax debt goes unpaid. The good news: This penalty cant exceed 25% of the total taxes you owe. The bad news: The late-filing penalty is worse. It applies to the balance of your unpaid taxes as of the filing deadline, usually April 15.
- The late-filing penalty is 5% for each month or partial month that your tax return is late, with a maximum penalty of 25% of owed taxes. The clock starts at your tax deadline, and the penalties add up, or accrue, until you file.
The more time that passes, the more you owe. If you dont file within 60 days of the return due date , you’ll owe $435, or a penalty equal to 100% of what you owe, whichever is less.
Interest is added to any unpaid tax, from the time the payment was due until the tax is paid. Interest is calculated for each day your balance is not paid in full, and is assessed on the amount of taxes due plusany late-filing or late-payment penalties.
Double whammy: If you file late and you owe taxes, the maximum for the total associated penalties can be as high as 47.5% of the tax due22.5% for late filing and 25% for late payment.
Contact Sh Block Tax Services For Help With Your Back Taxes
Weve received a lot of phone calls, emails, and web requests related to unemployment and back taxes lately, and were happy to discuss the complex details of this tricky and nuanced situation with every taxpayer.
If youre struggling with tax liabilities or any other tax-related issues right now, were here to help. Please contact us today by calling or completing this brief form. Our tax attorneys and staff have decades of experience assisting taxpayers just like you and are ready to assist with even the most challenging problems.
Dont hesitate reach out today!
The contentprovided here isfor informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.
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What If I’m Owed Money
If you file your tax return and realize you’ve made a mistake, which results in a bigger refund than you calculated on your original tax return, sit tight and wait until your original return is processed and you receive the initial refund. Then you can file your amended return.
If the IRS receives your amended return before it’s processed your original return, your amended return does not replace your original return. Each tax return stands on its own.
The IRS will send you a check for any balance it owes you, based on your amended return, but you may have to wait up to three months to receive the check.
State Taxes And Amended Returns
If you live in a state that has an income tax, don’t forget that you may need to file an amended state tax return as well to reflect the same changes that motivated you to change your federal return. You may be due an additional refund from the state as well if you’re due one from the federal government. When in doubt, consult with a tax professional or your state’s tax authority.
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What If I Am Unable To Pay In Full At This Time
If you’re unable to pay your tax bills in full, you may qualify for an installment payment agreement . With an IPA, you’ll make monthly payments toward your unpaid tax balance.What you need to know:
- You must have a bill before you can request an IPA .
- The fastest and easiest way to review your billand request an IPA is through your Online Services account.
- With Online Services, you can view your bills sooner than you would by mail.
- You can make your request online if the IPA is for a balance of $20,000 or less and requires no more than 36 scheduled monthly payments.
- You can keep up to date with your IPA and make payments by visiting Get information regarding your existing IPA.
- The department may offset any money owed to you from a state or federal tax refund to either shorten the duration of your IPA or pay your balance in full.
- You’ll continue to accrue penalty and interest on any unpaid balance for the duration of your IPA. If you do not satisfy your full tax balance, or comply with the terms of your IPA, we may take collection action against you.
If You Think The Amount Youve Been Charged Is Wrong
If you think your statement is wrong, you should and ask them to explain it.
Income Tax helplineMonday to Friday, 8am to 8pmSaturdays, 8am to 4pmCalls cost 12p per minute from a landline, and from 3p to 45p from a mobile
HMRC phone lines are often busy. The best time to call is between 8am and 11am on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays – but you might still have to wait in a queue.
There are lots of reasons why the tax youre being asked to pay could be wrong. It could be because:
- you made a mistake on your tax return
- you stopped being self-employed, but didnt tell HMRC
- you missed filing a tax return, so your income tax has been estimated – HMRC call this a determination
- a payment you made previously hasnt been taken into account
- your profits have fallen, so any payments on account included in your bill are too high
TaxAid helplineMonday to Friday, 10am to middayCalls cost up to 12p per minute from a landline and 45p from a mobile
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Undelivered Federal Tax Refund Checks
Refund checks are mailed to your last known address. If you move without notifying the IRS or the U.S. Postal Service , your refund check may be returned to the IRS.
If you were expecting a federal tax refund and did not receive it, check the IRS’Wheres My Refund page. You’ll need to enter your Social Security number, filing status, and the exact whole dollar amount of your refund. You may be prompted to change your address online.
You can also to check on the status of your refund. Wait times to speak with a representative can be long. But, you can avoid waiting by using the automated phone system. Follow the message prompts when you call.
Anticipate Late Fees And Penalties
Unfortunately, the IRS is going to charge you interest and penalties on any amount you pay late. Like running a balance due on a credit card, these charges are going to make it harder to pay what you owe.
The more you’re able to pay on time, the less interest and penalties you’ll be assessed.
The IRS will eventually send you a bill, but you don’t have to wait to get the bill to make additional payments.
Pay what you can when you file your return, then send in whatever additional payment you can afford each payday using Form 1040-V.
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Online Payment Plans Include:
- Short-term payment plan The payment period is 120 days or less and the total amount owed is less than $100,000 in combined tax, penalties and interest.
- Long-term payment plan The payment period is longer than 120 days, paid in monthly payments, and the amount owed is less than $50,000 in combined tax, penalties and interest.
If the IRS approves your long-term online payment plan , a setup fee may apply depending on your income.
If you already have a payment plan, you may also qualify to use the online payment plan option to revise your existing agreement. Changes you can make online include revising payment dates, payment amounts and banking information for Direct Debit Installment Agreements.
If you don’t qualify for an online payment plan, you may also request an installment agreement by submitting Form 9465, Installment Agreement RequestPDF, with the IRS. If the IRS approves your IA, a setup fee may apply depending on your income. Refer to Tax Topic No. 202, Tax Payment Options.
Can You Buy A House If You Owe The Irs
Taxpayers with back taxes run into real estate agents and ask, Can owing taxes affect home purchases, or can I buy a house if I owe the IRS? Owing taxes to the Internal Revenue Service can adversely affect your life, especially if you want to buy a house. But it’s possible.
Taking steps towards debt resolution with the Internal Revenue Service is significant to your homeownership success, mortgage payments and approval. Furthermore, the Federal Housing Administration loan program is another easy route with an FHA IRSpayment plan. The commission’s website is home to the FHA guidelines for IRSpayment plans. Consider engaging a tax attorney to improve your approval chances for an FHA loan with back taxes owed.
Can I buy a home if I owe taxes? is a common question for taxpayers. Consider providing evidence proving your active tax resolution steps with the IRS to improve your chances of buying a house.
Will a tax lien affect me buying a house? Brotman Law can protect your finances and prevent your tax debt from turning into a lien. A tax lien can definitely lead to loan and mortgage denial.
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What To Do If You Cant Pay Your Taxes Right Now
If moneys tight and you cant afford to pay your taxes right now, the IRS offers payment options to spread out the time required to pay your taxes. You can set up a payment plan directly through the IRS website using their Online Payment Agreement tool.
To qualify, your specific tax situation will determine which payment options you can use. The available options include full payment, a short-term payment plan lasting 180 days or less or a long-term payment plan or installment agreement that requires you to make monthly payments.
If you choose to pay upfront through the IRS Direct Pay portal, you wont pay a setup fee nor will you need to pay future penalties or interest added to your balance. Under the short-term payment plan, you also wont encounter a setup fee, but you’ll need to pay accrued penalties and interest until the balance is paid in full.
If you elect to apply for a long-term payment plan through automatic withdrawals from your checking account, you’ll pay $31 and, like the short-term payment plan, you’ll pay accrued penalties and interest until the balance is paid in full.
If you opt for non-direct debit, you’ll face a $130 installment agreement setup fee. If you need to revise an existing payment plan or reinstate after a default, youll be charged a $10 fee.
With TurboTax, you can do your taxes, your way. Do it yourself, get expert help, or hand it off start to finish lets get your taxes done right.
What Happens If You File Taxes Late
Generally speaking, the earlier you can file your return, the better.
In the event you file taxes late, the IRS starts by sending you a summons. If you earned enough income from a W-2 job or from self-employment during the tax year, generally, you should receive a W-2 or 1099 form reporting your income. Even if you dont report income on your tax return, you must remember that your employer or client might have.
The summons comes via mail and the IRS collection process begins, meaning the IRS has a reasonable belief that you do owe taxes. You’re legally required to meet with the IRS for you to determine your tax liability.
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What Happens If You Havent Paid Taxes In Years
If you havent paid your taxes in years, it is possible that the IRS will seek to recover those funds from you in a number of ways. This may include garnishing wages from your paycheck, placing a lien on your home or other high-value property, or come directly for your bank account. The IRS may also withhold future tax returns until your tax bill has been paid down.
There are other penalties you may face, as well. If you owe more than $55,000 in taxes, the government can refuse to issue you a passport. The IRS may also choose to refer your outstanding tax payment to a private collections agency, which will likely be much more aggressive in trying to recover the funds.
There is a 10-year statute of limitations on unpaid taxes, meaning in most cases the IRS cannot pursue taxes owed that go back beyond a decade. There are some exceptions, but in most cases, the agency will have to drop its collection efforts.
Are You Eligible For Federal Employment If You Owe Taxes
Legislation Pending to Require Higher Tax Accountability for Federal Employees
On July 31, 2012, the United States House of Representatives passed H.R. 828, also known as the Federal Employee Tax Accountability Act of 2012, by a majority of 263 to 114. It has since been referred to the United States Senate where it has been read twice and further referred to the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.
The bill, if enacted, looks to limit eligibility of delinquent taxpayers to be employed by the federal government, including delinquent taxpayers that are discernible as those taxpayers who have an outstanding tax debt and have had a notice of lien filed against them in public record. This includes both those seeking employment and those currently employed by an agency as defined in § 7381 of the bill to include Executive Agencies, United States Postal Service, the Postal Regulatory Commission and employing authorities in the legislative branch. The bill allows for exceptions, some of which are:
- Debts being paid in accordance to a payment arrangement or offer-in-compromise
- Debts which currently have a collection due process hearing or relief, requested or pending
- Debts granted relief
These exceptions, along with the fact that several members of Congress have, or have had, delinquent tax problems, exemplify what I have advised people for decades:
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If Your Refund Is Held/offset To Pay A Debt
The Michigan Department of Treasury withholds income tax refunds or credits for payment of certain debts, such as delinquent taxes, state agency debts, garnishments, probate or child support orders, overpayment of unemployment benefits and IRS levies on individual income tax refunds.
Why is My Refund Being Held?
The Michigan Department of Treasury may apply income tax refunds or credits to an unpaid debt. For more information, select one of the following options:
Installment Agreements For Unemployed Individuals
Many taxpayers who are dealing with a tax liability have already entered into an installment agreement with the IRS through the Fresh Start program.
For all taxpayers who are currently entered in an installment agreement, your payments are suspended from April 1 to July 15, 2020. This means you are not required to make your payments if you prefer not to, and you will not default on your agreement due to non-payment. Interest will continue to accrue, but if youre suffering a hardship, you might be better off withholding payment for now.
After July 15th, if no additional measures are taken to increase the suspension period for installment agreements, you should reach out to S.H. Block Tax Services to learn more about being placed in Currently Not Collectible status. This is a hardship status where the IRS eases your tax burden if you are unable to cover your monthly living expenses such as rent, mortgage, food, childcare, healthcare, utilities, and transportation costs.
If you are unemployed and owe back taxes but have not yet filed for an installment agreement with the IRS, the first thing you need to do is to make them aware of your unemployment status. The best way to do so is by requesting a letter from the unemployment office or sending a copy of your unemployment check.
The IRS is still negotiating installment agreements during the COVID-19 pandemic and will work with you to help ease the burden of your tax liability due to your unemployed status.
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