ASK THE CALIFORNIA EMPLOYMENT TAX AND PAYROLL TAX ATTORNEY – IRS TO RESUME COLLECTION NOTICES – DON’T IGNORE THEM
By Robert S. Schriebman
During COVID-19 the IRS suspended sending out collection notices to those owing back taxes. On May 9, 2023, the IRS announced that it would be resuming sending out the usual series of collection notices. In May, the IRS plans to send out between 5 million and 8 million balance due notices known as CP-14 Notices. These notices may vary in intensity from the benign initial notice that you owe the IRS to the harsher notice stating the IRS’ intent to levy and intent to file a Notice of Federal Tax Lien (NFTL). IRS collectors, known as revenue officers, will be assigned the task of collecting the huge multibillion dollar “tax gap.”
An IRS notice is nothing to take lightly. We have a serious non-compliance problem in this country with only about 1/3 of American taxpayers timely filing their returns and paying their share of taxes. I believe the initial emphasis for IRS collectors will be the tax gap associated with payroll tax non-compliance.
According to the IRS’ chief collector, Darren Guillot, the IRS plans to communicate vigorously with taxpayers and tax professionals. This will create potentially huge logistical problems between the IRS Collection Division and the IRS Office of Appeals as taxpayers will be petitioning the IRS for administrative resolutions through Appeals by the filing of Collection Due Process (CDP) petitions in order to avoid enforced collection action such as a bank account levy or wage garnishment.
I know a thing or two about owing the IRS having written many books on IRS collection procedures, teaching, and lecturing throughout the country. Below you will find 10 rules that I have developed to help taxpayers and tax professionals deal with IRS revenue officers.
- The key to success when dealing with any phase of the collection process is communication.
- Be aware of the truly awesome powers of the Collection Division and the individual revenue officer.
- Very often, the key to your economic well-being is the tax professional’s one-on-one relationship with the revenue officer assigned to the case.
- Make use of the audit reconsideration process whenever you can.
- Use your initial meeting with the revenue officer to attempt to abate delinquency penalties. If you don’t ask…you don’t get!
- If you are having problems dealing with the revenue officers assigned to your client’s case, don’t hesitate to go to a supervisor, manager, or higher. You may also request another revenue officer assigned to the case…but you better have a good reason.
- The best way to get concessions from a revenue officer is to show good faith in truly wanting to resolve your matter. Actions speak louder than words. You may buy the time you need by cooperating with the revenue officer. Revenue officers have unpleasant jobs to perform.
- Revenue officers love money. Even if you cannot pay in full – pay something.
- The IRS neither texts nor emails. The IRS collectors communicate by letter, telephone and personal visits. If you find a revenue officer contact card on your doorstep, do not ignore it.
- Before the IRS undertakes enforced collection action, you will receive a notification that you have a right to a collection due process (CDP) hearing. Do not ignore this notice. File a timely CDP petition to guarantee your right to an administrative hearing that can result in avoiding a bank levy of wage garnishment.
IRS revenue officers have an enormous amount of power. Thankfully, they restrain their power in an effort to work out a solution to a tax debt such as an installment payment arrangement. It is a serious mistake on the part of the taxpayer to ignore a call or a letter from the IRS collector. The three most important words when dealing with a tax collector have always been – communication, communication, communication.
Robert Schriebman has a successful practice in the Rolling Hills Estates area of Los Angeles County serving clients throughout California and the United States. He has successfully dedicated more than 50 years to helping individual taxpayers, business owners, CPAs, Enrolled Agents, and tax attorneys navigate the complicated tax systems of the federal and state governments. Mr. Schriebman is in private practice. He is not affiliated in any way with the EDD, and he is not employed by the EDD or any other agency of the State of California.
Robert Schriebman has written the only 2 books ever published dealing with how California Employment Development Department (EDD) operates. See “California Tax Collection Practice and Procedures” and “California Taxation Practice and Procedure,” both published by Commerce Clearing House.
Robert Schriebman has written over 20 books including the major manual used nationally by practitioners and the IRS, “IRS Tax Collection Procedures – A Manual for Practitioners” published by Commerce Clearing House.
Robert Schriebman has written over 20 books including the major manual used nationally by practitioners and the IRS, “IRS Tax Collection Procedures – A Manual for Practitioners” published by Commerce Clearing House in addition to the only 2 books ever published dealing with how California Employment Development Department (EDD) operates. See “California Tax Collection Practice and Procedures” and “California Taxation Practice and Procedure,” both published by Commerce Clearing House.
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