Over the past several years as taxpayers have endured the Great Recession the IRS has escalated the number of federal tax liens filed against delinquent taxpayers. The IRS aggressive use of liens has been criticized by the National Taxpayer Advocate in her annual report to congress and the IRS Advisory Council in its annual report to the Commissioner. IRS recently announced a new, more flexible attitude in policies and programs to help taxpayers pay back taxes and avoid tax liens.
In this article tax attorney Robert E. McKenzie discusses the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty.
The IRS Collection Division attempts to collect delinquent taxes as inexpensively and rapidly as possible. To accomplish this task the IRS makes extensive use of computers. Only when automated methods have failed to collect a tax is the matter assigned to an individual for collection.
From the Government’s perspective, statutes of limitation restrict the taxpayer’s right to claim a refund of
overpaid tax or initiate litigation to obtain a refund. From the taxpayer’s perspective, statutes of limitation
prevent the IRS from collecting a deficiency in tax or beginning a civil or criminal case. In short, statutes of
limitation provide a date of finality after which actions taken by the IRS or the taxpayer cannot be disturbed by
the other party