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Tax Lien

When a taxpayer does not pay their taxes, the government will routinely file a lien against the taxpayer's property; including their personal property, real estate, and financial assets.  The lien will also attach to any property the taxpayer acquires during the life of the lien.

The IRS will file a Notice of Federal Tax Lien with the county government where the taxpayer lives, conducts business, or owns property and the taxpayer is generally not informed of the lien until after it is filed.  A federal tax lien can affect a taxpayer in many ways:

  • Creditors will be alerted to the fact that the IRS has the right to your property and this may affect your ability to get credit including, a mortgage, car loan, business loan, etc.
  • The lien will attach to any business property, including accounts receivable.  This allows the IRS to send out third party levies to your business clients, which could result in embarrassment and the loss of clients.
  • Liens are not updated, therefore, any payments you have made will not be reflected in the amount shown on the Notice of Federal Tax Lien.
  • Tax liens attach to a taxpayers property and not to them personally, therefore, if a taxpayer discharges their tax debt in bankruptcy the Notice of Federal Tax Lien may continue.  This may result in the IRS still having the ability to collect the tax debt upon the sale of the taxpayer's assets.