Tax Liens in Washington County, Arkansas
In Washington County, Arkansas, 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 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 Washington County, Arkansas tax authorities, to gather taxes that the property-owner has failed to pay.
However, like any other debt-collection method, a tax lien is worthless if the debtor has no substantial property on which a lien can be imposed. To get around this limitation, most tax liens in Washington County, Arkansas apply to after-acquired property (property acquired after the lien was created). Most other liens only apply to particular pieces of property, or property that the debtor owned at the time the lien went into effect.
Tax Lien Procedure in Washington County, Arkansas
The process of imposing a tax lien on property in Washington County, Arkansas is typically fairly simple. The initial step is for the IRS or local tax agency to decide that a person truly owes back taxes, and that it is worth the effort to impose a lien.
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 deadline passes without payment, most tax liens in Arkansas take effect automatically, giving the tax collectors all of the options in your property that any other lien holder would have.
But, under federal law, there are limits to how tax liens can be enforced in Washington County, Arkansas, and elsewhere. Usually, the IRS has 10 years to try and enforce a tax lien. If no effort is made to enforce a tax lien for 10 years, the lien is automatically lifted, and the lien holder loses all rights in it. This rule exists to ensure that the government collects its taxes in a reasonable time period, and it prevents valuable property (which could otherwise be contributing to the economy by being bought and sold) is not laded with a lien for an indefinite period of time.
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How Can a Washington County, Arkansas Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If the federal government, or the government of Arkansas informs you that they intend to place a tax lien on your property, you will likely face some pretty confusing and daunting legal issues.
Thankfully for you, tax lawyers in Washington County, Arkansas are experts at dealing with matters such as these, and can make sure your rights are safeguarded, and advise you on the best way to proceed, if you are facing the prospect of a tax lien.