Tax Lien Lawyers in Oakland
In Oakland, California, 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 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.
A "tax lien," then, is a lien held by the government to collect a tax-related debt from a private entity, such as a person or corporation in Oakland, California.
Of course, a tax lien in Oakland, California 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. Evidently, this makes it quite a bit easier for the government to collect its taxes.
Tax Lien Procedure in Oakland, California
In Oakland, California, 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.
At this point, they will send the taxpayer a written notice stating that they owe a some amount of money in back taxes, and that they have a small window of time (commonly 10 days or less) to pay it.
If this deadline expires, and the debtor does not pay the taxes they owe, the lien will take effect automatically. When this happens, the IRS or California tax agency will have considerable rights against the taxpayer's property.
However, there are limits to how and when a tax lien can be enforced, at least under federal law. The IRS has 10 years to enforce a tax lien in Oakland, California or anywhere else in the U.S. If it never bothers to take action to seize property that's subject to a tax lien, the lien simply ceases to exist after 10 years. This rule is in place to ensure that the government does not sit on its rights, and to prevent potentially-valuable property from being encumbered indefinitely. Basically, it creates a measure of certainty for both parties.
How Can a Oakland, California Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you receive notice from the federal government, or the government of California that a tax lien has been imposed on your property, some pretty complex legal issues are necessarily involved.
Fortunately for you, tax lawyers in Oakland, California are experts at dealing with matters such as these, and can make sure your rights are protected, and advise you on the best way to proceed, if you are facing the prospect of a tax lien.