Crest Tax Group specializes in providing affordable solutions to businesses and individuals alike that owe back taxes or find themselves in trouble with the IRS or State Taxing Authorities.
Our experienced staff of Tax Attorneys, Enrolled Agents, and CPAs will negotiate with the IRS/State on your behalf, allowing you to continue on with your life. Generally, you will not have to visit or speak with an IRS/State agent.
In the unlikely event that the IRS/State turns down your request for an IRS/State resolution program, we will help with your appeal, should you decide to do so, for FREE. Our work is not complete until you get the tax service you deserve from the IRS/State. We are here to see your IRS/State tax troubles get resolved on the very first try and we are committed to helping you in every way we can.
We offer the following services:
How can a IRS Penalty Abatement help? When the IRS assesses tax debt penalties, those penalties are added automatically to the taxpayer's account by the IRS computer system. Because of this, penalties are frequently added to a taxpayer's debt without taking his or her individual circumstances into account. And as you may have already discovered, IRS Tax Penalties can turn a fairly manageable debt into an overwhelming burden pretty much overnight.
A proper Penalty Abatement requires very specific wording and a solid understanding of the relevant IRS Code and Procedure. Even if you had a good reason for not paying your taxes on time, it is often extremely difficult to get these penalties removed without professional help.
In 2012, the IRS issued over $26,864,993,000.00 (that's 26.9 Billion Dollars) in penalties!
- Requesting a Penalty Abatement requires that you have a good reason. What qualifies as a good reason?
- It depends on the circumstances involved with your particular situation.
- The procedures for deciding who qualifies for a Penalty Abatement and for what reason seem to differ in each case.
- The best thing you can do is to request that the IRS abate your penalties by providing the circumstances surrounding your situation.
How Crest Tax Group Can Help
When a taxpayer decides to use the Crest Tax Group and they qualify for a Penalty Abatement, our goal is to help them get all of the penalties (and possibly some of the associated interest) either removed from the tax debt or refunded by the IRS. In order to do this, we show the IRS in writing that the taxpayer had "reasonable cause" for not paying the taxes and that he/she has shown "due diligence" and "no neglect" in attempts to repay the debt. We do this in the IRS's own language and apply the relevant sections of the IRS code directly to the client's circumstances, which then requires the IRS agent who reviews the case to drop or refund the penalties.
How can an IRS/State payment plan help? If you are unable to pay your entire tax bill when it is due, IRS/State Installment Agreements or IRS/State payment plans can help you pay off your tax debt over a period of time in the form of an installment loan agreement. Typically, IRS/State Installment Agreements take five years or less to complete. The monthly payments are based on how much you owe and how much you can afford to pay each month. The IRS/State may grant extensions to your installment loan agreement under certain conditions.
An Installment Loan Agreement (payment plan) with the IRS/State is a great solution for taxpayers who can afford to fully pay their tax debts if allowed to spread out the payments over several years. It is an alternative if you do not qualify for an Offer in Compromise. The IRS/State charges interest and an application fee when they accept tax payment by way of IRS/State payment plans, but these plans can help you resolve your inability to fully pay your taxes in one payment.
In order to qualify for a payment plan with the IRS/State you must comply with the following rules and provide the IRS/State with this information:
- You must have filed all tax returns (It’s O.K. to owe money but you must file).
- You will need to disclose all assets owned including all cash and bank accounts.
- You must not have adequate cash available in a checking, savings, money market, or brokerage account to pay the IRS/State.
- You must not have the capacity to borrow the amount owed to the IRS/State from other sources (i.e., a second mortgage on your home).
- You must not have adequate equity in a retirement account from which you can borrow or liquidate (i.e. an IRA or 401-K account).
The total dollar amount you owe usually dictates with whom the negotiations will be handled.
- Typically, IRS Revenue Officers are not involved in cases where the amounts owed are less than $25,000.
- The IRS/State will ask you to complete a personal financial statement and if a business is involved, you will also need a business financial statement.
- The IRS/State has determined allowable monthly expenses for individuals, which will be matched against your actual monthly expenses.
- The difference between your monthly income and your allowable monthly expenses will be the amount that the IRS/State will require you to pay on a monthly basis.
The Offer in Compromise, or also known as OIC, is a program that allows a taxpayer to settle their delinquent taxes for LESS than the total amount the IRS claims they owe.
The Offer in Compromise is arguably the most widely used of all tax resolution programs. In addition, new tax laws have given fresh hope to those who previously did not qualify for an OIC under previous legislation.
Our staff at Crest Tax Group has the skills and experience to determine whether an Offer in Compromise is the program for you. Retaining our tax professionals guarantees you peace of mind. You can rest assured:
- Settle your tax bill for LESS than the IRS claims you owe! We know all updated OIC administrative procedures and tax laws.
- We have considerable weapons including Special Circumstance Cases and Appeals.
- We know that a prepared and calculated approach is the only way to maintain our excellent track record of consistent OIC acceptance.
- If you qualify for the Offer in Compromise program, you can save thousands of dollars in taxes, penalties and interest. Taxpayers can negotiate settlements on all types of taxes including most payroll taxes, penalties and interest.
- The OIC program provides taxpayers who owe the IRS more than they could ever afford to pay, the opportunity to pay a smaller amount as a full and final payment.
- A Doubt as to Collectability (DATC) Offer in Compromise is negotiated on the basis of a taxpayer’s inability to pay and takes into account the taxpayer’s current financial position including the taxpayer’s equity in assets.
- The OIC program also allows taxpayers that do not agree that they owe the tax or feel that the tax has been incorrectly calculated, an opportunity to file an Offer in Compromise-Doubt as to Liability (DATL) and have their tax liabilities reconsidered.
The Collection Statute Expiration Date (CSED), commonly referred to as Expiration of Statutes, for IRS taxes is, in most cases, 10 years. Once this Statute period has run, any remaining tax debt is forgiven. The statutory period begins on the date the tax debt is assessed which is usually shortly after a taxpayer's returns are filed. If a taxpayer never filed their returns the Collection Statute would begin on the date that the IRS creates a Substitute for Return (SFR) for the taxpayer.
In some cases a taxpayer's debt may not expire exactly 10 years from the date of IRS assessment. There are a number of ways that the IRS Collection Statute can be extended. For example, filing a Bankruptcy or Offer in Compromise will usually extend the amount of time the IRS has to collect a tax debt. Leaving the United States for a period of time or other factors can also extend this Statute of Limitations as well. A tax debt which is assessed as a result of a citizen being convicted of tax fraud will never expire.
When working to resolve an IRS tax debt, the age of the debt and CSED date are very important factors to consider when coming up with a plan of action. If the debt is close to expiring, it is very important that both the taxpayer and any tax professional they are working with are careful not to take any action which will extend the IRS statute further into the future.
If you have a tax liability that you would like to resolve and/or if you have questions about the IRS Expiration of Statues (CSED) please contact us immediately!
A taxpayer is eligible for Currently Non Collectible (CNC) status when the IRS/State recognizes when a taxpayer’s gross monthly income is lower than her allowable expenses under the National Standards.
The IRS/State recognizes that you cannot afford to currently pay your tax debt, will delay the collection of your taxes, and your account will not be subject to adverse collection activities, such as bank or wage levies.
While you are in Currently Non Collectible (CNC) status the IRS Expiration of Statues (CSED) will continue to run for the taxes you owe.
What is Innocent Spouse Relief? Both spouses are usually liable for taxes owed to the IRS on a joint tax return but one spouse may be able to avoid tax liability to the IRS through the application of what has come to be known as the "Innocent Spouse Doctrine." Under this tax doctrine, a spouse may be excused from tax liability to the IRS for tax and/or tax penalties.
The 1998 tax law broadened the definition of "Innocent Spouse Relief" so that relief from IRS tax liability is now more available for those spouses who filed tax returns jointly, yet the circumstances demonstrate that it would be unfair for the IRS to hold both spouses equally responsible for the joint tax liability. In many of these tax cases, a spouse is relieved of responsibility to the IRS for tax, interest, and tax penalties on a joint tax return. This is called Innocent Spouse Relief.
Many married taxpayers choose to file a joint tax return with the IRS because of certain tax benefits this filing status allows. Both taxpayers are jointly and individually responsible to the IRS for the tax and any interest or tax penalties due on the joint tax return even if they later divorce. This is true even if a divorce decree states that a former spouse will be responsible to the IRS for any tax amounts due the IRS on previously filed joint tax returns. One spouse may be held responsible to the IRS for all the taxes due even if the other spouse earned all of the income.
How Crest Tax Group Can Help
The IRS has come up with guidelines for innocent spouse tax relief in order to help taxpayers that are being subjected to IRS problems because of their spouse's actions. In order to qualify, a taxpayer must prove they fit within these guidelines. If they are able to provide the IRS sufficient substantiating proof, they may qualify for innocent spouse tax relief and may not be liable for the taxes caused by their spouses or ex-spouses.
Criteria for possible qualification for Innocent Spouse Relief:
- You filed a joint tax return with the IRS which has a substantial understatement of the tax directly related to grossly erroneous unreported taxable income or the incorrect tax deductions, tax credits or tax basis of your spouse. Unreported taxable income is any gross taxable income item received by your spouse that is not reported on the tax return to the IRS. Incorrect tax deductions, tax credits or tax basis are any tax deductions, tax credits or tax basis of property claimed by your spouse on the tax return filed with the IRS for which there is no basis in fact or tax law.
- You establish that at the time you signed the joint tax return and filed it with the IRS you did not know, and had no reason to know, that there was a substantial understatement of income or tax.
- Taking into account all the facts and circumstances, it would be unfair for the IRS to hold you liable for the understatement of tax.
What is an IRS Tax Audit Appeal? When an IRS audit ends up in an audit recommendation you do not agree with, Crest Tax Group’s Tax Attorneys and/or Enrolled Agents can represent you before the IRS Appeals Office. Appeals Officers are often more experienced than the Revenue Agents who handle IRS audits. The vast majority of disputed IRS tax audits are settled during the IRS appeals process. It is important to have someone who understands the procedure and has been there before. The IRS handles many appeals every year; you are only involved in one.
An aggressive and knowledgeable Tax Attorney and/or Enrolled Agent can make a huge difference in the settlement you will be offered during the IRS appeals process. Like the taxpayers themselves, the IRS does not want to litigate these issues because of the time, expense, and risk of an unfavorable outcome. When the IRS loses a case, it sets a precedent that could cost them for years. A powerful professional on your side gives the IRS the maximum opportunity to lose. To avoid such a loss, the Appeals Officers usually look to settle these matters outside the courtroom altogether.
The goal of the IRS Appeal Division is to "settle" disputes between the IRS and taxpayers.
- The most common IRS decision which is appealed is that of an IRS Audit where the IRS has increased the taxpayer's tax liability.
- Often this increase includes additional penalties and interest.
- The taxpayer must file an IRS Appeals request within a certain time frame and follow the IRS guidelines for an Appeal request to be valid.
What is the process of an IRS Collection Appeal? There are a number of ways to halt IRS collections activities, including negotiating with the collections manager that is handling the case or seeking collection due process or collection appeal process hearing. Both the collection due process and the collection appeal process hearings involve expedited conferences with the IRS Collection Appeals Office to review decisions on liens, levies, seizures, and rejection or termination of installment agreements.
The key difference between these two programs is that the IRS collection appeals program does not allow further appeal to a court from denial of the appeal; whereas, collection due process does. An experienced professional can help you determine if you qualify for these programs.
Should you file for Bankruptcy to avoid IRS/State problems? The IRS/State does not like to talk about the use of Bankruptcy to reduce tax liabilities, but the reality is that many IRS/State taxes, penalties and interest do qualify for complete discharge in Bankruptcy.
You must use caution when considering whether bankruptcy will eliminate IRS/State tax debt.
- Even when bankruptcy can help, most clients want to avoid bankruptcy if possible.
- While certain IRS/State tax debts are eliminated by bankruptcy, NOT all tax debts can be eliminated.
An Offer in Compromise is often a much better alternative than bankruptcy, and the OIC can erase ALL your tax debts-even when bankruptcy won’t.
- In order for a taxpayer to benefit from the Bankruptcy laws and avoid paying income taxes, the taxpayer’s income tax liabilities must qualify.
- Many taxpayers and bankruptcy attorneys file bankruptcy without understanding whether the taxpayer’s income tax liabilities qualify for forgiveness. This often results in not discharging IRS/State income taxes that could have been discharged if the taxpayer had understood the bankruptcy laws.
- The most common types of taxes eligible for discharge in bankruptcy are old individual income taxes.
Taxes, which are not eligible for discharge in bankruptcy, are Civil Penalties for payroll taxes.