How to Appeal an IRS Tax Levy: Tax Levy Appeals Process
If you feel that you received the levy in error or you wish to discuss different collection options it is a good idea to file for a tax levy appeal. You can request an appeal of a tax levy at any time after the “Final Notice of Intent to Levy and Notice of Your Right to a Hearing” has been received. This notice says you have 30 days to file for an appeal but you actually can appeal even after that, the only difference is that your rights to contest the appeal decision are different. The sooner you file the appeal the better because if the IRS does seize assets those assets are extremely difficult, if not impossible to get back depending on the situation.
Please note that before any appeal is granted, you must first request a conference call and case review with the manager of the IRS unit that filed the tax levy. If you cannot come to a resolution, then you can request an appeal by using Form 9423, “Collection Appeal Request” or by using Form 12153, “Request for a Collection Due Process or Equivalent Hearing,” which is discussed below. The difference between the two is that the latter allows you file suit if the first result is not in your favor, whereas the former typically does not.
When You Can File for an Appeal
There are many reasons you can file for an appeal. The reasons range from a levy that was filed in complete error to you wanting to discuss various payment or settlement alternatives. Below are some common reasons why a tax levy can be appealed:
- Taxes were paid in full already
- You were assessed the tax and sent the intent to levy notice while you were going through bankruptcy and were subject to automatic stay during bankruptcy
- The statute of limitations on the back taxes has expired
- There was a procedural error made in the tax assessment
- The IRS did not give you the opportunity to dispute the tax amount assessed
- You would like to file for innocent spouse relief
- You would like to discuss other tax payment options or tax settlement options
If you fall into any of the categories listed above you have a good case to appeal the tax levy.
How to File for a Tax Levy Appeal
When filing for the appeal it is a good idea to both call the number on the notice and discuss your problem with the revenue officer and file for the appeal as well. When dealing with a levy it is important to cover all of your bases because the levy can severely hurt your financial situation if you don’t file the appeal the right way. In order to file for an appeal you must complete and file IRS form 12153, Request for a Collection Due Process or Equivalent Hearing. The appeal does suspend the 10-year statue of limitations as to how long the IRS has to collect taxes owed until the IRS Office of Appeals issues a decision. Mail this form to the address that is listed on the notice of intent to levy notice. After the appeal is filed the IRS will pause collection actions in order to review your appeal. After the hearing the IRS will issue you with their determination about your case. If they don’t agree with your appeal they will begin collection actions again unless you bring suit to contest the determination within 30 days of receiving their determination.
The appeals process can be confusing and it is highly suggested that you work with a tax relief professional in order to successfully file your appeal. A tax professional will know the best way to approach the appeal process in order to ensure your case is a success.
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