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Does an IRS tax lien come out of nowhere?

On Behalf of | Dec 17, 2021 | Tax Debt

Landing on hard financial times can make any Atlanta resident feel as if his or her life is out of sorts. In some cases, the situation can become so troublesome that government agencies, like the IRS, could place a tax lien on a person’s property due to lack of payment. Fortunately, this is not an outcome that typically blindsides individuals, so there is time to plan before it happens.

Before the IRS places a lien on someone’s property, the agency typically takes three steps, including:

  • The agency will assess the taxpayer’s outstanding balance and determine next steps.
  • The agency will attempt to contact the taxpayer with a Notice and Demand for Payment.
  • If payment is not received, the agency will file a Notice of Federal Tax Lien.

A tax lien is a serious situation to face. However, there are ways to address the predicament even if a lien is placed on a person’s property. For instance, a taxpayer may be able to file for a discharge of the property, which would allow certain property to be sold, likely to pay the outstanding tax balance. A taxpayer could also apply to have the lien withdrawn if they believe it has been applied in error or under other circumstances.

A best-case scenario would be for Atlanta taxpayers to pay off their tax debt at the first notice of an outstanding balance. Of course, that is not always feasible when individuals are facing difficult financial times. Rather than ignoring the issue, however, interested individuals may be able to speak with experienced tax law attorneys about their specific cases to determine their best options for handling a tax lien or tax debt in general.