Tax Lien Lawyers in Missoula
A "lien" in Missoula, Montana is a property right that a person or entity has in property owned by someone else, created by law, for the purpose of enforcing a debt. A lien gives its holder several rights in the property of another person, including the right to seize the proceeds of a sale of the property, and, if the debtor files for bankruptcy, the right to go to the front of the line among other creditors, making it more likely that the lien holder will collect something.
A "tax lien" is simply a lien placed on a piece of property by the state or local government, to secure the payment of back taxes. A tax lien in Missoula, Montana can arise to secure the payment of any federal or state tax, including income tax, estate tax, or gift tax.
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 Missoula, Montana apply to after-acquired property (property obtained 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 Missoula, Montana
In Missoula, Montana, the process for creating a tax lien is fairly uncomplicated. First, the tax authorities determine that a taxpayer truly owes taxes that they haven't paid (that they're delinquent in their 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 (typically 10 days) to pay them without incurring a penalty.
If the back taxes are not paid before the deadline is up, the lien will typically take effect immediately, with no further action by the IRS or Montana tax agency, giving them all the rights in your property that the law permits.
But, under federal law, there are limits to how tax liens can be enforced in Missoula, Montana, 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.
How Can a Missoula, Montana Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you end up having a tax lien imposed on your property in Montana, you will probably have to deal with some fairly challenging legal issues, which might be complex to a layperson.
Thankfully for you, tax lawyers in Missoula, Montana 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.