Are Back Taxes Ever Forgiven?

Does the IRS forget about tax debt after ten years?


Yes, in rare situations, the IRS will erase tax debt after ten years. However, due to extended suspensions, inconsistencies between the IRS’s tax assessment date and the date of your last return, and whether or not you’ve been paying your tax returns on time since the debt period began, that 10-year term may be longer than you believe.


In addition, certain activities and contracts may require you to sign a release stating that the IRS has the authority to extend the statute of limitations. As a result, the 10-year restriction may not be absolute.


Assume you’ve been suffering with tax debt for a long time and believe your collection period is coming to an end. In this case, you should consult with a tax professional to discuss your choices.

How long does it take the IRS to pay back taxes?


The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) usually has ten years to recover an unpaid tax liability. The IRS then deletes the debt from its records and writes it off. This is known as the “10-Year Statute of Limitations,” and spreading the information about it is not in the IRS’s best financial interests. As a result, a large number of taxpayers who owe money but haven’t paid it yet are unaware of this deadline. Furthermore, the intricacies of the regulation, like other IRS laws, can be difficult to grasp and confusing. As the Collection Statute Expiration Date approaches, the agency will most likely become even more aggressive in its collection efforts. The IRS officers might act as both “good cops” and “bad cops.” When playing “good policeman,” they may propose “deals.”


One frequent method is to put up a payment plan with installments:


It may appear to be nice at first sight. In exchange, they may have to agree to prolong the time they have to pay. People who owe the IRS money should consult with a tax professional who specializes in IRS back taxes and collection regulations, such as one of the tax professionals at, before agreeing to any of the IRS’s proposals. The ten-year period should begin when the tax is computed. However, tax debtors and the IRS sometimes dispute when this should occur.


The IRS has sometimes used a different technique to determine how long a debtor has to pay. This can happen if the debtor did not pay all or most of their taxes for a number of years. There may be concerns regarding when the debt assessment began. There are methods for persons who owe money to convince the IRS to agree. One option is to consult with a tax professional before heading to the IRS and providing all necessary documentation.


Forgiveness of Tax Debt


If you meet specific criteria, your tax record may be wiped clean. For example, the IRS is prohibited from pursuing a debt that has been outstanding for more than ten years. If you’ve owed this money for at least ten years, the government shouldn’t be allowed to collect it from you since it’s against the law.


Similarly, the IRS will seldom try to collect on a debt with a low RCP or Realistic Collection Potential. A low RCP is assigned to an account if the debtor:


– Has a low income


– Does not have any assets that may be stolen and sold, such as bank accounts or real estate.


– Is unable to repay the amount


If you fulfill all of these standards, your account may be designated as RCP. This means that even if you still owe the IRS money, they are unlikely to pursue you.


Non-Collectible Status, like the RCP, prevents the IRS from attempting to collect on a debt. This indicates you don’t have enough money or assets to pay off your debts. The program’s purpose was to allow taxpayers time to earn more money or locate money to pay off their obligations.


However, this program sometimes reduces the amount of time the IRS has to collect on the debt. The IRS cannot require you to pay what you owe once your tax account has been open for ten years. Finally, if an individual files for bankruptcy, the IRS is powerless to recover the funds. In very rare situations, tax bills can be discharged when a person files for bankruptcy. Even if your case is still open, the IRS cannot contact you or attempt to collect what you owe. If the court rules that debt must be forgiven, the IRS cannot pursue any further action against you for that amount.


The Fresh Start Program


Most individuals apply to one of the options from the fresh start program when they wish to have all they owe entirely or partially forgiven. Getting out of debt may be difficult and time-consuming. If you wish to pay your taxes faster, you can use the IRS’s “Fresh Start” program.


The Partial Payment Installment Agreement is the most usual manner for this initiative to be used. The PPIA allows you to make payments on your account that you can afford until debt is paid off in full or you paid off all of your debt, whichever comes first. The payment period is traditionally between one and six years.


In addition, you could get part of your debt waived by the use of an OIC, which stands for an offer in compromise. Usually, the IRS only considers this when no other option seems possible. In many cases, the IRS rejects applications for the OIC initiative. However, you might qualify if you get professional help. More often than not, tax professionals are very familiar with the IRS’ processes and can really help you get the most desirable outcome.


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