How to Work with a IRS Revenue Officer

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

If you have a tax debt, you may get an IRS Revenue Officer assigned to your case.  They are often used when the IRS cannot collect taxes through the regular avenues such as notices and phone calls.  Officers also come into the picture if you have a history of not paying your taxes or if you have not paid specific types of taxes such as payroll.  If you owe a large amount, you will also probably be assigned someone to your case.

IRS Revenue Officers are skilled members of the department with more training than the person you would speak with in collections.  This can be both a benefit and a disadvantage.  It is a benefit in that they have a better understanding of procedures and will follow protocol in regards to your case.  It can be a disadvantage in the fact that they will understand more about the case than you do.  This can give them the upper hand regarding your tax situation unless you have an attorney to represent you and work with them.

An IRS Revenue Officer seeks to find a resolution, but you have to ensure that you do not get obligated to something that you cannot afford.  Take these steps when working with your IRS Revenue Officer to protect yourself and reach a resolution that satisfies them and works with your needs.

1.  Contact a tax attorney that specializes in resolving IRS tax issues.  The professionals at Strategic Tax Lawyers can work with the officer to resolve your tax issues with your best interests in mind.

2.  Speak with the IRS to confirm they have received all necessary paperwork and that there are no outstanding returns to file.  At this time, get a total of the amount due that includes penalties and other fees.

3.  If you discover that some returns have not been filed, prepare those right away and then follow up again to make sure all records are in order.

After filing the proper returns, you may find that you have a balance that you owe.  You will need to gather your bank statements and paycheck stubs for at least the last three months to negotiate payments. 

You will need to complete the IRS form 433-F to determine if you have the ability to pay your balance in full and if you have any income over what is allowed for monthly expenses.

You may also need to prove that you attempted to borrow against any assets you have such as real estate or other property.  You will then need to contact the IRS Revenue Officer to attempt to work out a resolution by making payments or achieving a Currently Not Collectible status on your debt.

This is a complicated process that can be made easier when you work with tax professionals to negotiate payment terms.  They can provide the information you collect and assist you with questions you may have.

IRS Resources

The IRS.gov is a great tax law reference.  You can also contact the IRS for answers to specific tax questions.  Search for relevant IRS forms and publications that you can download.   Visit the Department of Labor for information on employment law; or head to Google for a keyword search about tax issues.  You can also go to the Beverly Hills Bar Association for information as well.