Tax Liens in Fairfield, Alabama
In Fairfield, Alabama, a "lien" is a security interest placed on a piece of property, normally land or a house, to secure the payment of a debt. It typically 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 Fairfield, Alabama tax authorities, to compile taxes that the property-owner has failed to pay.
However, a tax lien in Fairfield, 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 Fairfield, Alabama
The actual process of setting up a Fairfield, Alabama tax lien is normally pretty simple. The agency responsible for collecting taxes must first decide that a tax lien is warranted, normally 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 the back taxes are not paid before the deadline is up, the lien will normally 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 authorizes.
But, these rights are limited. In Fairfield, 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.
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How Can a Fairfield, Alabama Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you are notified by the government that you owe back taxes in Alabama, and that they are going to pursue a tax lien to collect their money, things can get very difficult, extremely quickly.
Therefore, it's important that you retain a tax attorney in Fairfield, 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.