Appealing a Wrongful IRS Levy

Any letter or notice from the IRS can send shivers up a person’s spine. It is incredibly important to first take some deep breaths, then to read the notice carefully. No matter what you do, do NOT ever ignore an IRS notice, as the consequences can be dire.

One of the many enforcement powers that the IRS is empowered with is the ability to levy a delinquent taxpayer’s wages, 1099 payments, bank accounts, retirement accounts, or any other personal property. This is amongst the most feared IRS actions as a levy is essentially a seizure of any of the aforementioned assets to satisfy your tax obligation.

Will the IRS Notify Me of an Impending Levy?

Absolutely. A levy is a last resort for the IRS, meaning that it has already sent numerous (legally required) notices to a delinquent taxpayer over time. These notices have escalated to the point that it sends a “Final Notice—Notice of Intent to Levy and Notice of Your Right to a Hearing”. If you get this notice, you should contact a tax appeal attorney immediately for assistance. An attorney can help you file an appeal, which will temporarily put the IRS levy action on hold.

What Are My Tax Appeal Options?

The IRS tax appeals office offers two primary procedures to appeal an impending levy. The first is a Collection Due Process (CDP) Hearing, in which you are entitled to a hearing to attempt to prove that one of the following occurred: (1) you are in bankruptcy proceedings; (2) the statute of limitations to collect have ended; (3) there was a procedural or technical defect in how the IRS treated the tax obligation or provided notice; (4) the taxpayer is already in negotiations or has already worked out a payment plan; (5) the tax obligation belonged to a spouse or someone else; or (6) the tax obligation has already been paid off. Significantly, if you receive an adverse CDP determination, you still retain the right to fight the matter in tax court.

Collection Appeals Program (CAP) Hearing—This is a quicker, more expedited process than a CDP hearing; however, it comes with some trade-offs. First, an appealing taxpayer is barred from challenging the amount of a tax liability, or that such a liability actually exists. Further, choosing a CAP hearing waives a taxpayer’s right to later take the matter before a tax court.

Contact an Experienced Attorney for Assistance

If you have been receiving notices from the IRS, it is important to contact a tax attorney. The IRS has powerful tools to collect on your tax obligations and ignoring the notices will not help you. The IRS is not foolproof and a tax appeal may be a viable option. I have a Master of Law Degree (LLM) in Taxation and am licensed to practice in the United States Tax Court. With over twenty years of experience in tax appeals, I can help you protect your legal rights. Contact The Law Offices of Robert S. Thomas at 847-392-5893 to schedule an appointment or visit our website today.

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