Taxpayers who have tax debt should make early efforts to resolve it for three reasons: first, it will reduce the interest they pay on the taxes owed. Second, it will reduce the penalties they need to pay on back taxes (the IRS charges penalties every month until the tax debt is not paid in full). Third, it will remove the constant danger of IRS collection actions.
To achieve a fast resolution of a tax debt case, taxpayers can either pay their tax debt in full and skip having to apply for an IRS payment plan or choose a payment plan such as Installment Agreement that allows them a quicker resolution.
Tax Debt Payment using Installment Agreement
An Installment Agreement allows payment of tax debt in fixed monthly installments. After an initial payment, you pay the balance over a fixed period of time in monthly installments. To resolve back taxes quickly, pay as much as you can in the initial payment and in monthly installments. It will not only reduce the amount of penalties and interest you pay on the back taxes, but will also resolve your case faster.
Streamlined Installment Agreements
Qualifying for an Installment Agreement has been simplified by the IRS under its Fresh Start initiative. Now, more taxpayers can use streamlined installment agreements, as the IRS has raised the filing threshold. Taxpayers that owe $50,000 or less in taxes can apply for an Installment Agreement without supplying their detailed financial statement to the IRS. Previously, the filing threshold was $25,000.
Under streamlined installment agreements, the maximum time period for repaying tax debt has been raised from 60-months to 72 months. However, it is always preferable to pay the debt quickly to reduce penalties and interest.
Taxpayers that owe more than $50,000 need to provide the IRS with a Collection Information Statement, though, they can also pay down their liability to $50,000 or less and then apply for a streamlined installment agreement.
Tax Debt Penalties and Interest versus Interest on Loan
As the interest and penalties the IRS charges on tax debt are usually more than what banks charge on loans, using a loan to pay the tax debt amount in full can be beneficial. Before contacting the IRS for tax debt resolution, consider taking out a loan to help you to pay less for tax debt resolution.