Tax Liens in American Canyon, California
In American Canyon, California, 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 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 American Canyon, California tax authorities, to collect 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 significant property on which a lien can be imposed. To get around this limitation, most tax liens in American Canyon, California apply to after-acquired property (property obtained after the lien was created). Most other liens only apply to specific pieces of property, or property that the debtor owned at the time the lien went into effect.
Tax Lien Procedure in American Canyon, California
Imposing a tax lien in American Canyon, California is typically an uncomplicated process. Generally, the tax authorities simply have to make a determination 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, the taxpayer will receive a letter containing a "notice and demand," which, as the name suggests, gives notice that the recipient owes taxes, and demands immediate payment. It will usually give the taxpayer about 10 days to pay the demanded amount.
If this 10-day period expires without payment, the tax lien arises automatically. Once this happens, the tax authorities in California have all the rights in the taxpayer's property that any other lien holder would have, including priority over competing creditors.
However, in American Canyon, California, and anywhere else in America, a tax lien only lasts for 10 years, and then it automatically expires. If the IRS fails to exercise the substantial rights that it has under a tax lien within that period of time, it is assumed that they never intend to do so, and the lien will cease to exist. This ensures that valuable property is only kept out of the economy for a limited period of time.
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How Can a American Canyon, California Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you are notified by the government that you owe back taxes in California, and that they are going to pursue a tax lien to collect their money, things can get very complicated, very quickly.
Accordingly, if you think that any piece of property you own might become subject to a tax lien in American Canyon, California, you should not hesitate to seek the advice of a competent tax attorney immediately.