Tax Liens in Andalusia, Alabama
In Andalusia, Alabama, a "lien" is a security interest placed on a piece of property, usually land or a house, to secure the payment of a debt. It generally gives a creditor the right to take ownership of any equity that exists in the property, to secure the payment of the debt. If the owner sells the property, the creditor may also be entitled to the funds of the sale, up to the amount owed. It can also give the holder of the lien a higher priority status, giving them an advantage over competing creditors, if the debtor files bankruptcy.
As you might have gathered, a "tax lien" is simply a lien placed on property by the IRS or Andalusia, Alabama tax authorities, to collect taxes that the property-owner has failed to pay.
However, a tax lien in Andalusia, Alabama will be ineffective if the debtor doesn't own any valuable property to encumber with a lien. As with any debt, the creditor can't collect if the debtor doesn't have any assets. Nonetheless, a tax lien can be applied to property that the taxpayer gains after the lien goes into effect.
Tax Lien Procedure in Andalusia, Alabama
Imposing a tax lien in Andalusia, Alabama is typically an uncomplicated process. Generally, the tax authorities simply have to make a decision that the taxpayer is delinquent in their taxes, and that imposing and enforcing a tax lien will actually be worth the effort.
They will then mail a document called a "notice and demand," which lets the taxpayer know that they owe money on their taxes, and that they have a certain period of time (usually 10 days) to pay what they owe.
If this 10-day period expires without payment, the tax lien arises automatically. Once this happens, the tax authorities in Alabama have all the options in the taxpayer's property that any other lien holder would have, containing priority over competing creditors.
Nonetheless, there are limits to how and when a tax lien can be enforced, at least under federal law. The IRS has 10 years to enforce a tax lien in Andalusia, Alabama or anywhere else in the U.S. If it never bothers to take action to seize property that's subject to a tax lien, the lien simply ceases to exist after 10 years. This rule is in place to ensure that the government does not sit on its rights, and to keep potentially-valuable property from being encumbered forever. Essentially, it creates a measure of certainty for both parties.
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How Can a Andalusia, Alabama Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you end up having a tax lien imposed on your property in Alabama, you will probably have to deal with some fairly difficult legal issues, which might be intricate to a layperson.
So, it should go without saying that if you are facing the prospect of your home or vehicle being slapped with a tax lien, you need to seek the advice of a reputable tax lawyer in Andalusia, Alabama as soon as you can.