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I Owe the IRS Money From a Previous Year. What Do I Do?

IRS Audit Defense, Tax Consultation

Learning that you owe money from past tax years can be scary, particularly if you can’t afford to pay the debt right now. There are some things you can do that will help you get out from under the debt more easily. Put fear aside and keep reading to learn how you can handle this situation.

Read and Respond to All IRS Notices

Ignoring the notices that inform you of your debt isn’t going to make it go away. Whether the notices come in the regular mail or require your signature, make sure you get them, read them, and respond to them. Ignoring the IRS notices will get you in more trouble and potentially cost you more money.

If you’re not sure how to respond, it’s best to get professional help rather than try to handle it yourself.

Remember the IRS Isn’t Perfect

The IRS is a government agency made up of people, and people make mistakes. Whether that mistake is in calculating how much you initially owe, or how much you’ve paid on a debt, they can happen.

This is why it’s a good idea to meet with a tax professional before agreeing to pay what the IRS says you owe. They can assist you by going over your tax records and doing the math again to make sure that you aren’t paying more than you owe – or money that you don’t actually owe at all.

Explore Your Payment Options

Despite your first panicked thought when you find out you owe, you do not necessarily have to pay all the money at once. You can request an extension. You can also make a payment arrangement, or make what’s called an “Offer in Compromise.” These are just a few of your potential choices.

Before leaping to use any particular one, take the time to explore each option available to you. Consider the benefits and drawbacks of each. If you’re not certain which options are available to you, or which one is right for you, meeting with a tax professional can help clear things up for you.

You Don’t Have to Handle It Alone

Taxes can be complicated. But you don’t have to handle this on your own. If the IRS has notified you that you owe money for previous years, or if you have other tax concerns, we can help. Whether it’s a simple error, an audit, or even the need for criminal tax defense, we offer a wide range of tax services to help you navigate the IRS system and resolve your issues as quickly and easily as possible.

Contact us today for more information and to discuss the specifics of your situation.