Tax Liens in Dothan, Alabama
In Dothan, 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 Dothan, Alabama tax authorities, to collect taxes that the property-owner has failed to pay.
However, a tax lien in Dothan, 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 Dothan, Alabama
Imposing a tax lien in Dothan, 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.
At this point, they will send the taxpayer a written notice stating that they owe a certain amount of money in back taxes, and that they have a small window of time (often 10 days or less) to pay it.
If the back taxes are not paid before the deadline is up, the lien will usually take effect immediately, with no further action by the IRS or Alabama tax agency, giving them all the rights in your property that the law allows.
But, these rights are limited. In Dothan, Alabama, and everywhere else in the United States, the IRS has 10 years to enforce a tax lien. If they do nothing about it within 10 years, the lien expires. This rule exists for a few reasons. First, it encourages the IRS to act as quickly and efficiently as possible, and not "sit on its rights." Additionally, it acknowledges the fact that any encumbrance on a piece of property, such as a lien, makes the property less valuable. By guaranteeing that the lien will either be satisfied or expire within 10 years, this prevents property from being withheld from the stream of commerce forever.
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How Can a Dothan, 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 Dothan, Alabama as soon as you can.