Tax Lien Lawyers in Fairfax County
A "lien" in Fairfax County, Virginia is a type of security interest that one person or entity has in someone else's property. Normally, a lien is created by a court, to secure payment of a debt. A lien gives its holder many rights in the property that is subject to it, including the right to seize the proceeds if the property is sold, and priority access to the property, in front of other creditors.
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 Fairfax County, Virginia can arise to secure the payment of any federal or state tax, including income tax, estate tax, or gift tax.
Tax liens in Fairfax County, Virginia are ineffective if the taxpayer doesn't have any property to place the lien on. However, virtually 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 Fairfax County, Virginia
Imposing a tax lien in Fairfax County, Virginia is normally an uncomplicated process. Usually, 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 typically 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 Virginia 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 Fairfax County, Virginia, 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." Second, 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 Fairfax County, Virginia Tax Lien Lawyer Help?
If you are notified by the government that you owe back taxes in Virginia, and that they are going to pursue a tax lien to collect their money, things can get very intricate, quite quickly.
Accordingly, it's important that you contact a tax attorney in Fairfax County, Virginia 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.