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Published:   |   Last Updated: February 8, 2024

Stop That Lien!

Every year, the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) helps thousands of people with tax problems. This story is only one of many examples of how TAS helps resolve taxpayer’s tax issues. All personal details are removed to protect the taxpayer’s privacy.



A self-employed government contractor found herself owing a significant balance due after the IRS disallowed certain expenses she had claimed on her return. The taxpayer’s preparer filed an amended return consistent with the exam adjustments. The taxpayer also requested that the IRS place a collection hold on the account because she could not make any payment at this time. She provided the IRS with financial information which supported her claim that she could not pay.

The IRS agreed that the taxpayer could not presently pay but insisted on filing a lien as a condition of the collection hold. TAS negotiated with the IRS and was able to stop the Compliance area from filing the lien (just two days before it was scheduled to be mailed to the county courthouse), thus avoiding irreparable harm to the taxpayer.

More information if you have concerns about paying your taxes.

If you need information on a specific tax topic, visit the TAS Get Help resource. It offers a step-by step guide on what you can do to settle some IRS issues on your own, what your taxpayer rights are and other options available to help you get resolution. Most issues can be resolved directly by working with the IRS. However, if you have tried, but are still unable to resolve an IRS issue, learn more about whether TAS can help you: TAS eligibility.

When working with the Taxpayer Advocate Service, each individual or business taxpayer is assigned to an advocate who listens to the problem and helps the taxpayer understand what needs to be done to resolve their tax issue. TAS advocates will do everything they can to help taxpayers and work with them every step of the way. Occasionally we feature stories of taxpayers and advocates who work together to resolve complex tax issues. Read more TAS success stories.