Tax Lien Lawyers in Gorham
In Gorham, Maine, a "lien" is a type of property right, which is created by a court to obtain payment of a lawful debt. Generally, a valid lien gives its holder the right to seize the property subject to it, or at least some of the property's equity, to satisfy the debt. If the owner sells a piece of property that's subject to a lien, the creditor who owns the lien may be entitled to the proceeds, up to the amount you owe them. It can also put them "first in line" compared to other creditors, if the debtor files for bankruptcy.
In Gorham, Maine, a "tax lien" is simply a lien imposed by the government to collect back taxes from a person or corporation, when other methods for collecting have failed.
However, a tax lien in Gorham, Maine 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. However, a tax lien can be applied to property that the taxpayer acquires after the lien goes into effect.
Tax Lien Procedure in Gorham, Maine
The actual process of setting up a Gorham, Maine tax lien is usually pretty simple. The agency responsible for collecting taxes must first determine that a tax lien is warranted, usually by finding that the debtor owes a significant amount of back taxes.
Then, the taxpayer is sent a letter with a "notice and demand," which informs the taxpayer that the IRS has determined that they owe back taxes, and that they have a short period of time (usually 10 days) to pay them without incurring a penalty.
If this deadline expires, and the debtor does not pay the taxes they owe, the lien will take effect automatically. When this occurs, the IRS or Maine tax agency will have significant 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 Gorham, Maine 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 Gorham, Maine Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you receive notice from the federal government, or the government of Maine that a tax lien has been imposed on your property, some pretty complicated legal issues are necessarily involved.
Accordingly, it's important that you hire a tax attorney in Gorham, Maine to ensure that whatever legal rights you have in this situation are protected. Your attorney will also be able to advise you on how to best deal with the situation.