It is important that you contact a tax professional experienced in representing taxpayers before the IRS and your State Tax Agency. If you don't take action to protect your assets, the IRS and State Tax Agency will take them from you. They can seize the money in your bank and investment accounts, your wages, your vehicles, your home, and even your retirement assets.

Liens are different from levies. A lien is an instrument used as security for the tax debt, while a levy actually takes the property to satisfy the tax debt(s). A tax lien is a negative record on your credit report, severely lowering your credit score.  This often makes it difficult for a taxpayer to obtain financing on an automobile or a home, get a credit card, or sign a lease. Tax Liens are public records that indicate you owe the IRS money. They are filed with the Clerk in the county where you live or where your business operates. Once a Federal Tax Lien is filed against your property you cannot sell or transfer the property without a clear title. You need to act NOW!

The IRS will record a Notice of Federal Tax Lien in your local county courthouse as a public notice that you owe taxes. The Notice reads, ""There is a lien in favor of the United States on all property and rights to property belonging to this taxpayer for the amount of these taxes, and additional penalties, interest and costs that may accrue"". The filing of the Tax Lien will cause a number of financial problems including making it more difficult to obtain credit and even employment.

If you don't pay the IRS what you owe or file an Offer in Compromise, you will have little success in getting the lien released. If you don't qualify for an Offer in Compromise, you may set up an Installment Agreement to pay your taxes over a period of time, or you may qualify for Currently Not Collectible status.

Liens mark the priority of IRS against other creditors and attach to all your assets as payment for your tax debt. A Notice of Federal Tax Lien may be filed only after: IRS has assessed the liability; IRS has sent you a Notice and Demand for Payment - a bill that tells you how much you owe in taxes; and you neglect or refuse to fully pay the tax debt within 10 days after IRS notifies you.

By filing notice of this lien, your creditors are publicly notified that the IRS has a claim against all your property, including property you acquire after the lien is filed.

You may try to appeal the filing of a lien. The law requires the IRS to notify you in writing not more than 5 business days after the filing of a lien. You may ask an IRS manager to review your case, and you may request a Collection Due Process hearing with the Office of Appeals by filing a request for a hearing with the office listed on your notice. You must file your request by the date shown on your notice.

It is important to attack tax liens that are invalid.  A tax lien could be invalid if a lien is on property which is not owned by you, a lien was filed during a bankruptcy proceeding, a lien was recorded in the wrong county, or it was for discharged taxes now being asserted on future-acquired assets.

Time is of the essence. Do not just try to ignore this lien process. The IRS will file a lien against a business or individual when they continue to be ignored. An individual has 10 days and a business has 30 days to protest the action. You must adhere to the guidelines or you will lose your rights to protest.

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