In This Issue May 2012
Your Options When You Owe the IRS but Can't Fully Pay
Effects of the current economy show in your bank account and on your brow. You're still trying to figure out how you're going to get through 2009 when it arrives: a tax bill from the IRS.
If you believe you received this bill in error, you should immediately contact the IRS office that sent you the bill and provide copies of any records, tax returns, cancelled checks, etc., that may help support your claim. The IRS will investigate your claim and make the necessary adjustments to your account and your bill, if they agree.
• Ask for more time. If you are temporarily unable to pay your tax liability, you may be eligible for a short-term—up to 120 days—extension. You pay nothing extra for this request, which you can make online.
• Make regular payments. If another 120 days still isn't enough time, you can request an installment agreement. If you owe less than $10,000 in the tax alone (not including penalties and interest), and you meet the IRS's strict qualifications, you may be able to pay off your liability in monthly installments. If you owe $25,000 or less and can pay your liability within 60 months, you may qualify for a “streamlined” installation agreement. Finally, you can apply for a more traditional type of installment agreement, which requires extensive financial disclosure and a detailed financial analysis.
• Declare hardship. If you can show that collection of the tax debt would cause a financial or other hardship for you or your family, the IRS may suspend collection of your debt for one year, at which time it will reexamine your situation. Penalties and interest, however, will continue to accrue during the suspension period.
I welcome the opportunity to meet with you to review these options and determine which one makes the most sense for you. Please contact me to set up a complimentary one-hour consultation where we can discuss your needs and how I can help you.
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