What is an IRS Tax Lien?
An IRS tax lien is a right or claim to your property. The IRS tax lien generally arises when you owe a tax debt and fail to timely pay it.
Until the IRS files a notice of the tax lien, you are able to sell your property to third parties for fair market value. These parties who pay fair market value can succeed to title to your property over the IRS.
When the IRS files notice of its tax lien, that’s a different story. Think of the IRS tax lien notice as a “you owe us” note that attaches your property. It puts others on notice that the IRS has some right to the property.
After the IRS tax lien notice is filed, third parties are on notice of your unpaid taxes. Merely paying you full market value for your assets will not allow the third party to acquire clear title to your property.
IRS Lien, Who Cares?
IRS tax liens can exist for many years. They often prevent you from selling your property or borrowing against the value of your property.
In the event that you sell property subject to an IRS tax lien, the IRS may be able to either reclaim the property from the third party and/or take the proceeds from you.
How Do I Know if the IRS Filed a Tax Lien Notice?
The IRS is required to send you a notice letting you know that it filed its notice of Federal tax lien.
If you did not get the notice in the mail, you may become aware of the IRS tax lien when you attempt to sell your real estate or your vehicles. The IRS tax lien places a cloud on the legal title, which means you cannot live up to your contractual agreement to deliver marketable title on the specified sale closing date.
To avoid breach of contract claims you may have to act quickly to have the IRS tax lien removed. An experienced tax attorney can negotiate with the IRS to have the IRS tax lien removed or lifted.
And There are IRS Estate Tax Liens
IRS estate tax liens warrant special attention. The IRS estate tax lien frequently causes problems for taxpayers who are serving as personal representative or executor of a family or loved one’s estate.
IRS estate tax liens can prevent the executor from distributing funds as the decedent intended and they can result in the personal representative being held personally liable for any unpaid estate tax obligations.
An experienced tax attorney can help you address IRS estate tax liens.
Get Help with IRS Tax Liens
We are experienced tax attorneys in Houston, TX. We help clients with IRS tax matters, including IRS liens and IRS lien notices.
If you have a question about IRS tax liens, we would like to hear from you.
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