How IRS Collection Works

Whether you live in Severn, MD or Anne Arundel County, MD or anywhere else in the world, the IRS collections process works the same.  The focus of my practice in Severn, MD is to help taxpayers get in compliance with their IRS and state tax filings and to represent them before the IRS and the state with their tax collection issue.

The collection process is explained in IRS Topic Number 201:  “If you don’t pay your tax in full when you file your tax return, you’ll receive a bill for the amount you owe.  This bill starts the collection process, which continues until your account is satisfied or until the IRS may no longer legally collect the tax; for example, when the time or period for collection expires.”  Sounds easy enough, right?  Oh, but it just gets better from there!

You can expect to receive a notice that demands payment in full that will include any penalties and interest that have accrued. The last thing you want to do is to ignore the letter from the IRS—more letters will come, and they won’t be nearly as pleasant as the first.

The best scenario would be for you to have paid your IRS and state taxes due at the time you filed your tax returns. Since you’re reading this blog, however, you probably didn’t go that route.  The next best option would be to pay the amount due as soon as you can to minimize the penalty and interest charges even if this means getting a cash advance on your credit card or obtaining a loan from the bank or a family member.

If you’re unable to pay your balance in full at the time you file your returns or even when you receive the letter from the IRS, don’t despair. The IRS is more than willing to work with you on meeting your tax obligation and have made several options available to you including:

  • Installment agreement
  • Partial payment installment agreement
  • Offer in compromise

While there are several options available to you when you owe taxes to the IRS or to the state, navigating the maze of IRS forms and requirements when you have a collection issue can be confusing at best and potentially nerve-wracking or frightening.  If you need help getting in compliance with your IRS and state tax filings and in dealing with your tax payments due in Severn, MD or elsewhere, please contact my firm at:

Lisa D Church, CPA, EA, MBA
7865 Clark Station Rd
Severn, MD  21144