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Published: February 26, 2021   |   Last Updated: October 24, 2022

Taxpayer Requests: Collection Due Process (CDP)/Equivalent Hearing

  • Collection Due Process (CDP) Hearing (Within 30 Days);
  • Equivalent Hearing (Within 1 Year): or

View our interactive tax map to see where you are in the tax process. It could help you navigate your way through the IRS.

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Station Overview

You received various notices or letters from the IRS requesting payment for the balance you owe, and the debt remains unpaid. Since you have a balance owing, the IRS is continuing with its collection process by issuing one of the following notices that contain the right to a Collection Due Process Hearing (CDP):

  • Notice of Federal Tax Lien Filing and Your Right to a Hearing under IRC 6320
  • Final Notice – Notice of Intent to Levy and Notice of Your Right to a Hearing
  • Notice of Jeopardy Levy and Right of Appeal
  • Notice of Levy on Your State Tax Refund – Notice of Your Right to a Hearing
  • Post Levy Collection Due Process (CDP) Notice

The IRS is required to notify you of your CDP rights the first time a Notice of Federal Tax Lien (NFTL) is filed, and the first time it collects or intends to collect a tax liability through levy or seizure, for each tax and period you owe.

The Notice of Federal Tax Lien (NFTL) is filed with the local and/or state recording office to alert creditors that the government has a claim to your interests in any current and future property and rights to property.  You will be mailed a notice notifying you of your right to a CDP hearing within five business days of the filing of the NFTL.

A can take (seize) your property (such as funds from a bank account, Social Security benefits, wages, your car, or your home).  Generally, you will be mailed a notice notifying you of your right to a CDP hearing 30 days prior to the IRS issuing a levy or taking seizure action.  There are circumstances where the IRS is not required to send the notice of levy and your right to a CDP hearing until after the levy is issued. These circumstances include:

  • When collection of tax is in jeopardy
  • When the IRS levies your state tax refund
  • When the criteria for a Disqualified Employment Tax Levy is met
  • When the IRS serves a federal contractor levy

All CDP notices have a 30-day deadline to submit the Form 12153 to request a CDP hearing with the IRS Independent Office of Appeals. If your request for a CDP hearing is not timely, you may request an equivalent hearing for up to one year after the date of the notice.

This notice or letter may include additional topics that have not yet been covered here. Please check back frequently for updates.

What does this notice or letter mean to me?

You may appeal many IRS collection actions to the IRS Independent Office of Appeals (Appeals). Appeals is separate from, and independent of, the IRS Collection office that initiated the collection action.  This Notice is your right to appeal by requesting a CDP or Equivalency hearing.

To request a CDP hearing with Appeals, you will have until the deadline stated in the letter or notice to submit the form 12153.  If your request for CDP is sent to the address listed on your notice by the deadline stated in the letter, you will be able to contest Appeals’ decision in  U.S. Tax Court if you disagree.

  • Generally, enforcement action, such as levy and seizure, are suspended for the periods that are included in the CDP.
  • Filing a request for CDP will extend the Collection Statute Expiration Date (CSED). Typically, the IRS has ten years to collect a balance owed once it is assessed.  There are situations where the timeframe for the CSED is suspended and/or extended.  When request a CDP hearing, the CSED is suspended from the date the IRS receives the timely filed CDP request to the date you withdraw your request or the date a determination from Appeals becomes final.  If you disagree with Appeals decision and petition the U.S. Tax Court, the CSED will be suspended until the Court’s decision is final.

If your request for a CDP hearing is not timely, you may request an equivalent hearing by completing the Form 12153 and sending it to the address listed on the notice.  To receive an equivalent hearing, your request must be postmarked on or before the end of the one-year period from the date of the notice.  You will not have the right to petition U.S. Tax Court if you disagree with Appeals’ equivalent hearing decision.

  • Enforcement action may still occur when you request an equivalent hearing.
  • The CSED is not suspended when you request an equivalent hearing.

This notice also explains the possible denial or revocation of your United States passport. Visit Revocation or Denial of Passport in Case of Certain Unpaid Taxes for further information.

How did I get here?

You received various notices or letters from the IRS requesting payment for the tax balance due and the debt remains unpaid. Since you have a balance due, the IRS is continuing with its collection process by either filing an NFTL, pursuing levy action, or issuing a levy.

What are my next steps?

First and foremost, don’t ignore notices from the IRS. Even if you can’t pay the taxes you owe, responding to a notice before the due date could prevent further enforcement action. For example, the IRS can issue a and take your property or assets.

If you are able to full pay the balance owed, see Payments for the various ways you can pay your IRS debt.  If you can’t pay the full amount by that date, you can explore payment options that might work for your situation.  You can contact the IRS at the phone number located at the top right hand corner of your notice to set up a payment plan or discuss other ways to address your balance.

If you disagree with the proposed action in the notice and/or the balance owing, this Notice is your right to request a CDP hearing. You’ll have until the date shown on the notice to request a CDP hearing with Appeals. If you wish to appeal the filing of the NFTL, proposed levy action, and/or levy action, you need to timely complete and mail Form 12153, Request for a Collection Due Process or Equivalent Hearing. If you do not file Form 12153 by the due date on the notice and send it to the correct mailing address, you will lose the ability to contest Appeals’ decision in the U.S. Tax Court.

If you do not submit a request for CDP hearing timely, you can request an equivalent hearing.  To receive an equivalent hearing, your request must be postmarked on or before the end of the one-year period from the date of the notice.  You will not have the right to petition U.S. Tax Court if you disagree with Appeals’ equivalent hearing decision.

Once your CDP or equivalent hearing request is submitted, you can expect to hear from the IRS Independent Office of Appeals following the receipt and review of your case. If it has been more than 120 days since you filed your protest requesting an appeal and you have not heard from the IRS, contact the IRS office to which you sent your appeal request. If you do not know which IRS employee or office last worked your case, call the IRS taxpayer assistance line at 1-800-829-1040. If the IRS office responds that it has sent your case to Appeals, call the Appeals Account Resolution Specialist (AARS) function at 559-233-1267 and provide the requested information with your message. AARS will generally respond within 48 hours, telling you if your case has been assigned and how to contact that employee directly. If Appeals hasn’t received your case yet, you will not receive a call back.

Once you are assigned to an Appeals Officer (AO), the AO will be able to address the liability itself, and is able to establish a payment option based on your financial situation.   If you believe you have an acceptable reason for interest or a penalty to be removed or reduced, you can also discuss potential options for abatement with the AO.

If you are outside of the timeframe for CDP and/or equivalent hearing, you can still request a hearing with Appeals either before or after the IRS levies your property or files the Notice of Federal Tax Lien.  You can contact the IRS at the number listed on your notice, and request a manager conference.  If the manager sustains the employee’s decision, you can submit a request for appeal through the Collection Appeals Program (CAP).

You may represent yourself in your Appeals proceedings, or you may be represented by an attorney, certified public accountant, or a person enrolled to practice before the IRS. Also, you may be represented by a member of your immediate family, or in the case of a business, by regular full-time employees, general partners, or bona fide officers.  If you want your representative to contact us or appear without you and to receive and inspect confidential material, you must file a properly completed Form 2848 (no earlier than 10/2011 revision), Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative. You may also authorize an individual to receive or inspect confidential material but not represent you before the IRS, by filing a Form 8821, Tax Information Authorization. These forms are available at your local IRS office, by calling 1-800-829-3676, or from IRS.gov.

See Publication 594 and Publication 1660 for a full explanation of the IRS collection process and appeal rights.

Where can I get additional help?

Understanding your notice or letter

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If you still need help

The Taxpayer Advocate Service is an independent organization within the IRS that helps taxpayers and protects taxpayers’ rights. We can offer you help if your tax problem is causing a financial difficulty, you’ve tried and been unable to resolve your issue with the IRS, or you believe an IRS system, process, or procedure just isn’t working as it should. If you qualify for our assistance, which is always free, we will do everything possible to help you.

Visit www.taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov or call 1-877-777-4778.

Low Income Taxpayer Clinics (LITCs) are independent from the IRS and TAS. LITCs represent individuals whose income is below a certain level and who need to resolve tax problems with the IRS. LITCs can represent taxpayers in audits, appeals, and tax collection disputes before the IRS and in court. In addition, LITCs can provide information about taxpayer rights and responsibilities in different languages for individuals who speak English as a second language. Services are offered for free or a small fee. For more information or to find an LITC near you, see the LITC page on the TAS website or Publication 4134, Low Income Taxpayer Clinic List.

Related Notices or Letters

  • Collection Due Process (CDP) Hearing (Within 30 Days) or Equivalent hearing (Within 1 Year)
    • Notice of Lien Filed and Right to Collection Due Process Hearing
      • Letter 3172, Notice of Federal Tax Lien and Your Right to a Hearing Under IRC 6320
    • Letter 1058: aka L1058, Final Notice Reply Within 30 Days — Notice of Intent to Levy and Notice of Your Right to a Hearing
  • Letter 1058F: aka LT1058F, Post Levy Federal Contractor Collection Due Process

Where am I in the tax system?

Taxpayer Requests: CDP/Equivalent/CAP

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