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Understanding the IRS fresh start program

On Behalf of | Jan 3, 2018 | Tax Debt

Many individuals owe back taxes, which can weigh on their finances. Thankfully, there are tax relief programs in place to assist these people.

A popular option is the IRS Fresh Start program. If you are considering this program, there are a few things you should understand about it.


The IRS provides information about the program in detail. It is actually not just one program but rather a compilation of different programs that aid individuals and small businesses in paying their taxes. In short, the IRS offers different payment plans and options to assist in making payments manageable. Since its inception in 2011, the IRS Fresh Start program continues to evolve and grow to aid people in various situations.


Since the program comprises a few different repayment plans, there is no one set of criteria that individuals can meet. However, there are certain requirements that individuals must meet to qualify for the initiative as a whole:

  • Must file all relevant tax returns
  • Tax payments or withholdings are current for the last six months

Outside of these requirements, each program may have its own additional stipulations. Individuals should take the time to review them in order to determine the best choice.


There is no official application process for the Fresh Start Program. The program has spearheaded changes in IRS tax law, which allows certain parties to take advantage of the program. Another option is to seek an IRS tax settlement, which may help to eliminate certain back taxes altogether. For those who desire to go this route, it may be beneficial to speak with an attorney who specializes in tax matters. Such attorneys have the knowledge and experience to develop strong cases for the IRS to consider.

This is a short overview of the IRS Fresh Start Program. Take some time to educate yourself on the various aspects of the program so you may make the best decision for your particular case.