Tax Lien Lawyers in Elba
In Elba, 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 Elba, Alabama tax authorities, to collect taxes that the property-owner has failed to pay.
However, a tax lien in Elba, 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 Elba, Alabama
The actual process of setting up an Elba, Alabama tax lien is usually pretty simple. The agency responsible for collecting taxes must first decide that a tax lien is warranted, usually by finding that the debtor owes a significant amount of back taxes.
Then, the IRS, or state tax authorities, send a "notice and demand," informing the taxpayer that they owe back taxes, and that they are obligated to pay their taxes within 10 days.
If this deadline expires, and the debtor does not pay the taxes they owe, the lien will take effect automatically. When this occurs, the IRS or Alabama tax agency will have significant rights against the taxpayer's property.
But, these rights are limited. In Elba, 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." Also, 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.
How Can a Elba, Alabama Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If the federal government, or the government of Alabama informs you that they intend to place a tax lien on your property, you will likely face some pretty perplexing and daunting legal issues.
Therefore, it's important that you hire a tax attorney in Elba, Alabama to ensure that whatever legal rights you have in this situation are defended. Your attorney will also be able to advise you on how to best deal with the situation.