People, struggling to pay a income tax debt or worried that the IRS will seize (levy) their paycheck, may have a slightly easier time thanks to changes announced by the IRS recently.
“These changes to the Offer in Compromise program will help give taxpayers a fresh start,” said Doug Shulman, the IRS commissioner, in a conference call with reporters. These changes “are especially appropriate as the American people and small businesses are climbing out of the worst recession in a generation.”
More taxpayers will have access to an IRS Settlement via the Offer in Compromise program, which allow taxpayers to pay less than the full amount of their bill. Under the new program, IRS Settlements via the Offer in Compromise program (OIC) will be available to people with annual income of up to $100,000 will be eligible, up from $50,000 previously.
“I’ve made a whole set of changes to the Offer in Compromise (OIC) program since I’ve been here to try to increase the participation rate, increase the acceptance rate, because it’s good for the tax system,” Doug Shulman, the IRS Commissioner said.
Also, the IRS will allow taxpayers to continue making their car payments, rather than counting that money as part of the taxpayer’s assets considered available for the unpaid tax debt.
“There are a variety of things, all aimed at increasing acceptance rates for an Offer in Compromise, making it a user-friendly thing to apply for,” Shulman said.
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If you qualify for an IRS Settlement through the IRS Offer in Compromise (OIC) program, you can "get your life back", you can save thousands of dollars in taxes, penalties and interest. Taxpayers can have IRS Tax Debt on all types of taxes, including most payroll taxes, penalties, and interest. It is the closest thing to amnesty that the federal government offers in connection with back tax debt.
Taxpayers should bear in mind however, that the IRS Offer in Compromise program or IRS Penalty Abatement program is a privilege, not a right such as bankruptcy. That being said, it is a very subjective process. The IRS has the final word. The IRS Offer in Compromise (OIC) process is a very complicated drawn out process that can take upwards of nine months to a year and even longer. There are IRS guidelines, rules and protocols established by operation of law, under IRC Section 7122. However, most IRS Offer Examiners (former Revenue Officers) use the Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) as their guide.