How Can I Stop Wage Garnishment
Facing Tax Debt
Individuals facing tax debt often find themselves going through unpleasant collection attempts by the IRS. Many times, people do not realize they have committed a tax error and collection methods take them by surprise. Tax debt may occur from accidental errors on tax returns or unforeseen taxes resulting from financial transactions. When these types of situations occur, taxpayers often find themselves unable to pay the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). We want individuals to know that legal options exist to help them with their outstanding tax liabilities.
Benefits of Voluntary Compliance
If the IRS determines that people have unpaid tax debt, the agency takes steps to collect that debt. Typically, the IRS will first use passive methods to collect those back taxes – the logic being that passive methods tend to lead to voluntary compliance. As examples, the IRS charges penalties and interest on any outstanding debt. These charges increase the amounts owed to the IRS, which increases taxpayer liability. By using these measures, the agency hopes that people will act quickly to pay that debt. In addition, the penalties and interest keep growing if the debt remains unpaid. Therefore, because taxpayers know the amount owed, the IRS uses these passive methods to encourage people to discharge their debt. If this approach does not work, the agency may use enforced compliance methods.
Wage Garnishment: An Enforced Compliance Measure
In some situations, the IRS uses a more aggressive approach to collect outstanding debt. One popular method is garnishment of wages. IRS garnishing occurs when the agency has employers withhold funds from paychecks to pay back taxes. Those funds go directly to the IRS until people pay off their unsettled debt.
IRS garnishing may cause financial hardship. Therefore, it is important for taxpayers to understand how to protect themselves and stop wage garnishment. Lawyers at a tax law center have the ability to provide assistance to those who find themselves in this position.
How to Stop a Wage Garnishment
While paying a debt in full is the most efficient way to settle back taxes, this is not always a viable option. Individuals who find themselves in this situation should know that one of the most effective ways to stop a wage garnishment is by arranging a debt settlement plan with the IRS. Prior to agreeing to a specific plan, consider consulting an attorney at a tax law center to ensure that your debt settlement plan will not cause further financial harm.
Types of Debt Settlement Plans
Individuals who owe back taxes should talk to the IRS to see if the agency will accept a lesser amount to settle the debt and avoid IRS garnishing. The IRS offers the following plans:
• Payment Plans – Individuals may enter into structured payment plans to stop a wage garnishment. Under payment plans, individuals voluntarily agree to comply with the IRS collection process. In turn, the IRS does not need to enforce involuntary compliance by having employers partake in garnishment of wages.
• Offer in Compromise – Individuals who provide concrete evidence that they have the resources to settle their debt for less may have the option to enter into an Offer of Compromise. If the IRS accepts this method, individuals pay lump sums, make short-term periodic payments or make deferred periodic payments.
Taxpayers looking to stop a wage garnishment should consult a tax professional before entering into any agreements. A tax attorney has the ability to help people determine which debt settlement plan will work the best for them. In addition, a tax lawyer has the skills to analyze financial information to determine if customers meet non-collectible status.
Looking for Further Assistance? Contact Us!
Our tax attorneys understand how to stop a wage garnishment and they will discuss available options. In particular, a tax attorney has the background to explain how to begin the process of voluntary compliance with the IRS – people must meet this condition to stop garnishment of wages. If individuals do not meet the non-collectible status, they have to begin paying their debt. Because negotiating a payment plan is complex, it is best to employ a wage garnishment lawyer at the tax center who understands how to work with the IRS. Having support from a tax professional will make the situation a less stressful one.