If you don't pay your taxes in full, you'll receive a bill from the IRS. When this happens, the collections process begins. You'll continue to accrue interest and penalties on the billed amount until you pay it in full, or the IRS can no longer collect it because the collection time has expired. You can appeal an IRS collections decision through either Collections Due Process or the Collections Appeals Program.
Rights During Appeal
As a taxpayer, you have the fundamental right to challenge the IRS's position and be heard. As a result, you have the right to appeal any collection decision to the IRS. During the appeals process, you have the right to represent yourself or have a tax professional represent you, including a CPA, attorney, or an enrolled agent authorized to practice before the IRS.
Appealing IRS Collections
The IRS Independent Office of Appeals handles all appeals independently of the IRS Collections Office that initiated the collections action against you. You may be able to utilize the Collection Appeals Process or Collections Due Process depending on the type of decision you are appealing.
- Collections Due Process
You may use Collections Due Process if you receive a letter from the IRS stating that you have a right to a CDP hearing. If you make a request within the time limits, you are entitled to an Appeals hearing and can seek judicial review of that decision with the tax court.
- Collections Appeals Program
The Collections Appeals Program (CAP) cases are typically resolved quickly and involve a specific collections plan proposed or taken by the IRS. However, you cannot take a disagreement with the CAP decision to court.
Hire an Experienced Tax Attorney
If you're in the middle of the IRS collections process, particularly if you want to appeal, you need a tax professional to guide you. The IRS rules regarding appeals have strict time limits and procedural requirements. If you miss your window, unpaid debts to the IRS can accrue significant interest and penalties, liens and levies, and result in the seizure of your accounts or assets. You need a skilled tax attorney to assist you before the situation worsens. If you need help, call Senior Partner, Tax Controversy Attorney, and former IRS attorney Brandon A. Keim at (602) 200-7399 or contact him online to discuss your options.