Tax Lien Lawyers in Athens
A "lien" in Athens, Ohio 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, then, is simply a lien that is appointed for the specific purpose of collecting taxes from a delinquent tax payer in Athens, Ohio.
Tax liens in Athens, Ohio are ineffective if the taxpayer doesn't have any property to place the lien on. However, essentially any property, including that which the taxpayer obtains after the lien goes into effect, can be affected by a tax lien.
Tax Lien Procedure in Athens, Ohio
The process of imposing a tax lien on property in Athens, Ohio is usually fairly simple. The first step is for the IRS or local tax agency to determine that a person actually owes back taxes, and that it is worth the effort to impose a lien.
At this point, they will send the taxpayer a written notice stating that they owe a certain amount of money in back taxes, and that they have a small window of time (often 10 days or less) to pay it.
If this 10-day period expires without payment, the tax lien arises automatically. Once this happens, the tax authorities in Ohio have all the rights in the taxpayer's property that any other lien holder would have, including priority over competing creditors.
But, these rights are limited. In Athens, Ohio, and everywhere else in the United States, the IRS has 10 years to enforce a tax lien. If they do nothing about it within 10 years, the lien expires. This rule exists for a few reasons. First, it encourages the IRS to act as quickly and efficiently as possible, and not "sit on its rights." Furthermore, it acknowledges the fact that any encumbrance on a piece of property, such as a lien, makes the property less valuable. By ensuring that the lien will either be satisfied or expire within 10 years, this prevents property from being withheld from the stream of commerce indefinitely.
How Can a Athens, Ohio Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you end up having a tax lien imposed on your property in Ohio, you will probably have to deal with some fairly difficult legal issues, which might be complex to a layperson.
Accordingly, if you think that any piece of property you own might become subject to a tax lien in Athens, Ohio, you should not hesitate to seek the advice of a competent tax attorney immediately.