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Appealing the Filing of an IRS Tax Lien

Just as the IRS is required to follow due process in the filing of any tax lien against you, you are required to follow due process in any appeals. The IRS is required, by law, to notify you within 5 business days of filing a tax lien against you. They may give you this notice in person, leave notice at your home or your usual place of business, or send notice by certified or registered mail to your last known address. You have the right to ask an IRS Manager to review your case, or to request a Collection Due Process hearing with the Office of Appeals by filing a request with the office listed on your tax lien notice. You must file your request by the date shown on your notice. Some of the issues you may discuss include:

  • Taxes were paid in full before the lien was filed.
  • Taxes were assessed and the lien filed when you were in bankruptcy, and subject to the automatic stay during bankruptcy.
  • A procedural error was made in an assessment.
  • The time to collect the tax (the statute of limitations) expired before the lien was filed.
  • You didn’t have the opportunity to dispute the assessed liability.
  • You wish to discuss the collection options.
  • You wish to make spousal defenses.

The IRS Office of Appeals will issue a determination at the conclusion of your Collection Due Process hearing. That determination will either support the continued existence of the federal tax lien, as filed, or cause the lien to be released or withdrawn. If you disagree with the Appeal’s determination, there is a 30 day period starting with the date of determination, in which you may request judicial review in a court of proper jurisdiction. Refer to IRS Publication 1660 (PDF), Collection Appeal Rights, for more information.

Active tax liens may be listed on your credit reports ultimately making credit repair more difficult.

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