What about IRS Liens?

I represent taxpayers in Gainesville and the state of Florida who have tax issues with the IRS. IRS Liens are a big part of the IRS Collection Division’s tool kit for collecting back taxes. If a taxpayer owes money to the IRS, there is an automatic tax lien against them, all of their assets, and any future assets that they might acquire.

What the IRS Must Do

    There are three prerequisites to create this “silent” lien:

  1. The IRS must have assessed the tax liability,
  2. The IRS must have given the taxpayer notice of the amount assessed and has demanded payment, and
  3. The taxpayer has failed to pay the amount assessed within 10 days after notice and demand.

Public Notice

These silent liens are not a big problem. But, when the IRS goes public your life cam become miserable in a hurry. They do this by filing a Notice of Federal Tax Lien at the courthouse where you own real estate. The result is an immediate hit on your credit rating. Additionally, you will receive a deluge of mail from national companies claiming that they can make a deal with the IRS for pennies on the dollar. Unfortunately, Offers-in-Compromise to minimize the debt are formula driven. This formula considers the taxpayer’s equity in the assets they own plus their expected future earnings. Superior negotiation skills has very little to do with it.

What to Do

If you receive a Notice of Federal Tax Lien, your best option is to contact the IRS and resolve the issue. Resolution will come in the form of an Offer-in-Compromise or a payoff. It usually takes the IRS a minimum 30 days to issue the lien release.

If you or someone you know has received a Notice of Federal Tax Lien or some other federal or state tax issue, please feel free to contact me at either (352) 317-5692 or email

Solid Steps to Avoid IRS Liens or Levies

If you’re a Gainesville (FL) business owner, we share a desire — to avoid IRS tax liens and levies! If your firm is financially sound, with handsome profits and all debts and taxes paid timely, that’s wonderful. Go on vacation and send me a postcard. But few entrepreneurs can avoid all the ditches on the road to success, and many end up with unwanted IRS letters in their mailboxes.

Depending on the tax debt involved, this can lead to fear, panic, and paralysis. I’m also a business owner and have experienced hard times. But as a long-time CPA and former IRS agent, I know my IRS options, keep up with changes in the law, and was able to avoid the deepest ditches or become insolvent.

To start you feeling relief and hope, here’s my key advice on resolving all IRS problems:

Don’t ignore IRS correspondence — replies buy you time and perhaps favor. Never lie to the IRS. Get current with all filings, and make any payments due for your current year tax returns. If you can’t make the full payment due, send less, but send. Figure out your options by filling out IRS form 433 to assess your future cash flows and any assets that might be available for liquidation.

Depending upon how this analysis comes out, you might be able to make an installment agreement, make an offer in compromise, file bankruptcy, or convince the IRS that the tax debt is simply not collectible currently.

If you cannot make a satisfactory deal (you may not like any deal the IRS proposes), the IRS will likely begin collection by attempting to levy your bank accounts and/or place liens on the property you own. It is critical that you request an appeal hearing within 30 days of any lien or levy notice date.

The bigger the number of the debt, the more it pays to get professional representation. If you live in Gainesville, Florida, and have an IRS problem, call me at (352) 317-5692 for a free consultation. You can also send me an email at