Paying taxes is a fact of life, but when the amount is excessive, you may not have the funds to pay in full. Making a mistake on your taxes can be costly as well, and if you plug in the wrong numbers, the IRS will surely come calling.
Whether you owe money to the IRS due to an innocent oversight, a lack of funds, or something else, ignoring the problem will not make it go away.
Once you owe money to the IRS, the clock is ticking, and all the while penalties and compounded interest will be piling up. So, what should you do if you owe back taxes? Here are some critical steps to take.
Assess the Situation
Until you know how deep the hole is, you will not be able to start digging your way out. Before you do anything else, you should assess the situation, going through your old tax returns, reviewing communications from the IRS, and adding up what you owe the tax agency.
Once you have assessed the situation, you will be in a better position to make concrete plans. If you owe a lot of money, you may not be able to pay it off all at once, but with the help of a tax relief professional, you may be able to come up with a suitable repayment plan or you may be able to settle for less than you owe.
Review Your Budget
Owing money to the IRS is no fun, but you will have to resolve this one way or another. Hopefully, you can work out a more favorable payment plan with the IRS, one that might allow you to pay a reduced amount, but that will depend on your income, your allowable expenses, and your assets, if any.
It is important to review your monthly household budget carefully if you owe back taxes to the IRS. Every dollar you can pay back is one less dollar you will owe interest on, so think about where you can cut back and how you might be able to free up some cash.
Talk to a Tax-Relief Expert
The bad news is that you owe back taxes to the IRS. The good news is you may be able to settle the entire amount, including penalties and interest, for a fraction of what’s owed through the IRS’s offer in compromise program.
If you qualify for one of those programs, you may be able to settle your debt for less than you owe, but this is not something to tackle on your own. Work with a tax-relief expert, both to identify the proper programs and to make negotiating with the tax agency easier and more effective.
You can use the budget you reviewed earlier to identify sources of income and resources you have access to. Once that information is presented, the tax-relief expert can help you find a suitable tax compromise plan that just might save you a lot of money.
Take Care of the Problem Sooner Rather than Later
Time is of the essence when you owe money to the IRS. Once those back taxes are assessed, the clock is ticking, and every day that passes will mean higher penalties, and compounding interest.
If you want to put your tax debt behind you once and for all, you will want to act fast. The sooner you start working on your tax resolution plan, the sooner you can take your financial life back.
To help ease the stress from your situation, we offer a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our tax resolution experts. You don't have to worry about confidentiality or cost because the consultation is free with zero gimmicks or commitments. Schedule an appointment with one of our tax resolution specialists today.
Joseph Orabona III, EA
Vector Tax & Accounting LLC
576 Elm St.
Windsor Locks, CT 06096
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