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What can the IRS do if you fail to pay?

On Behalf of | Sep 19, 2022 | Federal And State Tax Collections |

Owing the IRS money may impact your life in more than one way. If you try and avoid the collection process, you may find yourself with higher hurdles to clear.

The IRS has set up programs to help qualified taxpayers who need help paying get the time and plan to do so. However, in some cases, the IRS may take further steps to recoup the money you owe, especially if you do not try and work something out.

What can the IRS do if you fail to pay?

Absent an approved installment agreement, the IRS may take steps to try and get their money.


The IRS may take legal steps to place liens on your property. A tax lien on your home or other property means you cannot sell it and get proceeds without a portion of that money going to your tax debt. Liens can show up on your credit and affect you for seven years.


In addition to liens, the IRS may put a hold or freeze on any cash accounts in your name. This means you may not have access to your checking account to pay bills or get groceries. The IRS does this if they believe you may try and liquidate assets to stash away elsewhere.


If you have any tax refund, the IRS may take it to use against your debt.


In extreme cases of tax debt, the IRS may move to take your property.

If you are having problems arriving at a reasonable way to repay your tax debt, a legal ally with experience may prove beneficial.