May 26

There is no time like the present for individuals who are having tax problems with the Internal Revenue Service as the federal government tax agency has announced a People First Initiative designed to help those who are having difficulties meeting tax liability obligations. The economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic is part of the policy shift, but it also applies to those who had an offer in compromise case pending or are in the process of paying installments on delinquent taxes. This change has an impact in several ways. Now is an excellent time to address any concerns taxpayers may have with respect to brokering an agreement with the agency by retaining tax assistance from the legal professionals at Brunsdon Law Firm.

Installment Agreements and Offers in Compromise

The first component of the policy involves short term changes to installment payment schedules and offers in compromise. Payment requirements for those currently paying under an installment agreement have been delayed until July 15, 2020, but there could be additional interest applied for those who choose the option to defer payments. The agency will also not make a final decision on any offers in compromise until after the July 15 extension without taxpayer approval. These changes will allow some taxpayers who have felt the crunch of the Covid epidemic to delay payments or potentially even make new arrangements in some cases.

Delinquent Taxpayers

Individuals who are having difficulties meeting their tax liabilities are also included in the policy shift, as the IRS does not intend to default on any taxpayers who are making reasonable attempts to bring their accounts current. This serves both to help those with an obvious need for some leniency because of verifiable problems and also allows those who have not paid an opportunity to get back into good standing. Brokering these agreements is always more successful when you have a tax professional handling your negotiation because taxpayers do still have specific rights and the agency appreciates seriousness when settling tax obligations. Indications are that the IRS will actually continue this type of collection policy for an extended period and at least until the Covid 19 medical emergency status is lowered. That makes now an optimum time for delinquent taxpayers to settle differences with the government.

Field Collection Process Suspension

Another significant policy shift for the IRS is the suspension of field collection activities, with revenue agents now opting to communicate by phone, electronic delivery, or standard mail. While part of the focus is on reducing in-person contact as much as possible, your attorney can use this communication policy shift to assemble all necessary documentation and negotiate a payment arrangement that is easier for the client and still acceptable to the IRS. This reduces apprehension and stress for those with tax problems while ensuring the personal safety of all involved parties.

Anyone needing tax assistance during this IRS People First Initiative period should contact Brunsdon Law Firm at 330.374.1166 for comprehensive representation.

The preceding is intended solely for informational purposes and is not intended as legal or tax advice. It is important for taxpayers to consult with an experienced tax attorney or Certified Public Accountant. Contact our office if you would like to further discuss your taxes.