If you owe money to the Internal Revenue Service, you might benefit from IRS revenue officer representation. An important thing to realize when faced with tax debt is that you are not alone. In fact, one in five Americans expected to owe the IRS some money when filing their taxes this year. Despite how common it is to owe the IRS money, this is definitely not a situation you want to procrastinate on fixing.
The IRS can resort to many tactics traditional creditors can’t to ensure they receive every last penny on time or with fees. Unfortunately, many people have no choice in putting off tax payments or might not even know they owe the IRS money at all. IRS revenue officer representation can help you resolve many of the issues that arise in these instances.
Common Ways People Acquire Tax Debt
If you owe the IRS money, you might already know how that came to be. However, there are millions of Americans who owe federal taxes and have no idea. How did this happen? Sometimes, when people hire accountants or tax preparers, they do a poor or dishonest job of filing taxes. The methods they use to save you money may cost you in the long run. Should the IRS conduct an audit, you then discover many years after the fact that you owe tax money plus fees.
Another common way you might have a tax debt you knew nothing about is if your spouse filed the returns jointly. Even if you did not work during the tax-filing periods, a joint return leads to joint liability. This can put you on the hook for taxes your spouse failed to pay. If you divorced and the settlement did not address these debts, the divorce might not absolve you. This is one reason many formerly dependent spouses rely on IRS revenue officer representation.
Business owners also commonly rack up tax debt. This is because when working for someone else, the employer becomes responsible for paying a portion of the employee taxes while the employee pays the rest. When paying yourself as a business owner, you pay the full portion of the taxes and must remember to keep up with payments throughout the year. If the business made just enough to cover expenses and pay a salary, you might owe taxes on that salary.
What To Expect When an IRS Revenue Officer Is on the Case
When tax debt remains unpaid for some time, IRS revenue officers might get assigned to your case. These agents have one task and that is to collect on the debt owed. They can exercise immense power to get this done. Here are some of the things you might experience before hiring IRS revenue officer representation.
- Personal Visits
Most creditors might only call and pressure you to pay. IRS revenue officers might visit your home, unannounced. They could even show up where you work. They can make it all the way up to your front porch or to the driveway, even if you put up a “No Trespassing” sign. When interacting with these officers, be courteous and polite, but be careful about disclosing any personal or financial information or making any promises. If you ask them to leave, they should do so.
- Personal Outreach
If you refuse to speak to the officer — and sometimes even if you do — they might reach out to the people closest to you. This includes visiting with the neighbor you’ve been arguing with about the placement of the fence for the past five years. It might also mean reaching out to your parents, adult children, siblings or other family members who can report on your financial situation. This is the point where many people first consider IRS revenue officer representation.
Some people might refer to debt collection as harassment the second the officer showed up in the driveway. However, there are allowances in place for this. Even so, there are clear lines drawn that constitute violations of their policies and your rights as a taxpayer. Here are some actions that fall into this category:
- Calling you or anyone else without stating upfront that they are a revenue officer
- Using profanity or stating obscenities while talking with you
- Making repeated phone calls with the intention of annoying you
- Threatening to cause harm or injury
What To Expect After IRS Revenue Officer Representation
One of the best things you can do to protect your finances and peace of mind is to hire representation. Once the IRS receives a notification of this, the officer then needs to speak with your hired representation.
This takes the burden off your shoulders and puts you in a much better position to negotiate your way out of trouble. It should also put a stop to the phone calls, personal queries and visits. Here are some common debt resolution options you might choose.
- Innocent Spouse Relief
If the debts owed actually belong to your spouse, you might qualify for this type of relief with the help of IRS revenue officer representation. Unfortunately, you might still owe some taxes as you may have benefited from the income or the incorrect deductions the spouse made that led to refunds they did not deserve. However, the new dollar value is typically much lower.
- Make Payments
The easiest way to keep the IRS at bay is to make payments. You can even do so in installments. To qualify for this, you generally need to have covered all or most of your state tax liabilities. The plan often lasts for only 120 days, but you might qualify for longer terms if you owe bigger debts.
- Offer a Settlement
Like traditional creditors, the IRS allows qualifying individuals to offer a settlement in lieu of making the full payments. An offer in compromise might require proving to the IRS that you are genuinely incapable of repaying what you owe. IRS revenue officer representation can help you determine what to submit.
There are many more tax resolution options available that Resolve Tax can help with. Contact us today to help restore your peace of mind and your financial health.