Tax Liens in Opelika, Alabama
In Opelika, Alabama, a "lien" is a security interest placed on a piece of property, typically land or a house, to secure the payment of a debt. It usually 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 proceeds 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 Opelika, Alabama tax authorities, to gather taxes that the property-owner has failed to pay.
Of course, a tax lien in Opelika, Alabama isn't worth much more than the paper it's printed on if the debtor doesn't own any property of value, on which a lien could be placed. However, a tax lien applies to property that the taxpayer obtains even after the lien is created. Apparently, this makes it quite a bit easier for the government to collect its taxes.
Tax Lien Procedure in Opelika, Alabama
In Opelika, Alabama, the procedure for imposing a tax lien is relatively simple. First, the IRS makes a determination that a person is delinquent in their tax obligation.
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 given period of time (typically 10 days) to pay what they owe.
If that time period expires, and the debtor still hasn't paid, the Alabama tax lien will go into effect automatically, with no further action required.
But, these rights are limited. In Opelika, 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." Furthermore, it acknowledges the fact that any encumbrance on a piece of property, such as a lien, makes the property less valuable. By ensuring that the lien will either be satisfied or expire within 10 years, this prevents property from being withheld from the stream of commerce indefinitely.
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How Can a Opelika, 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 intricate and daunting legal issues.
Accordingly, if you think that any piece of property you own might become subject to a tax lien in Opelika, Alabama, you should not hesitate to seek the advice of a skilled tax attorney immediately.