Tax Lawyer Secrets | Offer in Compromise | Flat Fee Tax Service | San Diego


An Offer in Compromise is an option that you have with the IRS to settle your back income taxes. If you owe a substantial amount of money in federal taxes ($10,000 or more), you can submit an IRS settlement agreement through the Offer in Compromise program for less than your total outstanding balance and see if the IRS accepts it. Generally considered the “nuclear option” if you have a tax bill you doubt you’ll ever be able to pay off, filing an offer in compromise is a long and daunting process (an Offered settlement can take 12 months) with many confusing and seemingly contradictory requirements.

Even though the Offer in Compromise program was simplified through the Fresh Start Initiative, gathering all the necessary paperwork for an offer in compromise is incredibly time to consume as is staying on top of communications from the IRS regarding your settlement offer. However, if your income tax debt is significant and/or you are in poor shape financially, it may be worth it to take the time to submit an Offer in Compromise.

Offer in Compromise

Offer in Compromise Types

First, you, the financially struggling taxpayer, need to know what type of offer in compromise you should file. There are two chief types of offers: doubt as to collectibility and doubt as to liability. Doubt of collectibility offers are made if it doesn’t look like the IRS will have any chance of collecting all or most of your outstanding balance right now or in the near future because your assets and income are outweighed by your outstanding balance. If you are filing a doubt as to liability offer in compromise, the premise for settling your back taxes is that there have been tax administration errors, and you don’t actually owe as much as the IRS says you do. Your liability isn’t supposed to exist under the current tax law, or ministerial errors were made.

An Offer in Compromise can also be made in the name of effective tax administration, where you are not arguing that tax law was correctly applied (and your balance is collectible to an extent) but that paying your outstanding taxes would cause a significant financial hardship, and the IRS isn’t going to get any money out of you as a result. For example, the value of your home could determine that your tax liability is collectible but losing your home would result in hardship.


Fees and Low-Income Certification

Generally, there is a $186 nonrefundable application fee when you apply for an offer in compromise. It is totally separate from any tax payments and doesn’t count toward your outstanding balance. The only exception to this is if you are submitting an offer based on doubt as to liability. The fee is also waived if you qualify for the low-income exception. If your monthly income falls at or below 250% of the poverty guidelines set by the Department of Health and Human Services, you can check off the low-income certification section of the offer in compromise form (Form 656).


Eligibility and Taking Care of Unfiled Tax Returns

The IRS Tax Lawyer at Flat Fee Tax Service who is handling your IRS tax problem, will ensure that you’re eligible for an offer in compromise. If you are in open bankruptcy proceedings, you can’t make an offer.

Flat Fee Tax Service can determine if you are eligible and qualified to settle with the IRS during our initial consultation.

Next, you need to make sure that you’ve filed all outstanding tax returns. The alternative is to wait for the IRS to file substitute returns on your behalf, but this frequently doesn’t have the best outcome. Substitute returns only account for the bare minimum of tax benefits and rely on data already in the system, such as W-2 and 1099’s on file, opposed to what your actual tax situation could look like. Because of this, your total outstanding tax debt could look a lot larger than it really is and make it harder for your offer to be accepted as a result.


Compiling a Personal Financial Statement

You need to prove that your income and assets are insufficient to pay your entire outstanding tax balance. IRS Form 656 has two different financial statement forms, one for individuals and businesses, with an extra section for self-employed taxpayers. This statement is incredibly exhaustive as you must provide information about your and your spouse’s employment, whether your dependents and other people living in your household contribute to the household income, household expenses, vehicles and other assets, and virtually anything else related to your ability to pay down your tax debt. You must include copies of documents such as pay stubs, car notes, student loan payments, and other proof of your expenses, income, assets, and debts to substantiate what you entered on the financial statement. If you are self-employed, you need to provide an extensive breakdown of assets used in your business as well as where your income comes from and the type of expenses you have.

The purpose of collecting so much financial information is so that the IRS can determine if you can pay your balance in a reasonably short time frame and that it doesn’t merit the other resolution options available to you such as going on a payment plan or making your account temporarily uncollectible.

Making the Offer in Compromise and Choosing a Payment Plan

Once you’ve compiled your financial statement, which should support your Offer in Compromise amount and how much you are able to pay, you then make the actual offer. The offer price should be as close to the original tax liability as possible, within reason.

You also will specify if you will make the offer in five payments or less with a lump-sum payment plan or periodic plan (typically monthly). If you are opting for the lump-sum option, your package must include a payment for 20% of the total offer amount. For periodic plans, including the first period’s payment in your package. You then need to stay current on these payment plans while waiting for the IRS to make a decision.

Waiting for the IRS to Respond

Once you submit the settlement offer and your initial payment, you must honor the payment arrangement proposed in your offer even though it will take time for you to get a response. While the IRS is processing your offer, you need to keep making these payments or else your offer will be voided. The only exception to this rule is if you meet the low-income certification guidelines.

Another important factor to consider is that while you wait for the IRS to accept or reject your offer in compromise, penalties and interest will still mount on your outstanding balance. Collection actions will be suspended, but you may still receive a federal tax lien that won’t be released until the terms of the offer have been satisfied. Because of this, if you have any outstanding installment agreements, then you don’t need to make payments on them.

If you received a notice that your offer was accepted, or two years passed from the date that the IRS received your offer, and they still didn’t respond with a decision, then your offer has been deemed acceptable. You still must keep up with the payments that you were making while waiting for a response, except that now your outstanding balance has been reduced to your offer amount. If you have any federal tax refunds for future tax years, they will also be applied to your outstanding balance.

A Returned Offer in Compromise and Rejections

A common mistake people make when submitting an offer in compromise that comes back to them is confusing it for a rejection. The IRS will sometimes send back an offer in compromise package if the information is missing. Other reasons for returning the offer package include failure to enclose the application fee or make the first payment, didn’t file the required tax returns, or didn’t pay current tax liabilities while the offer was being considered. While being in open bankruptcy proceedings generally deems you ineligible, you can still try to submit an offer in compromise, and it will just get returned instead of outright rejected.

This distinction is important because having an offer package returned to you doesn’t give you a right to an appeal. Your submission date completely resets once you’ve gathered all the missing information and/or payments and can resend your offer, starting the entire process all over again. This means that you will need to update your financial statement as well as provide new and current supporting documents.

If your Offer in Compromise is rejected, however, you will receive a formal rejection notice in the mail with detailed instructions on how to elevate your case to the IRS Office of Appeals. Your request for an appeal has to be made within 30 days from the date on this letter, or else you’ll have to start an entirely new offer from scratch. You will usually be given reasons for rejection and have the opportunity to dispute them as well as make a counteroffer for the amount you will pay over time.

Potential Consequences of Submitting an Offer in Compromise

If the IRS accepts your Offer in Compromise, you will never be able to dispute the amount in court or anywhere else. If you wind up having to file for bankruptcy after the offer has been accepted, the amount of federal taxes you owe now can’t be disputed.

If you suspect that you are going to default on a payment plan once they IRS has accepted an offer in compromise, you should contact the IRS immediately so your offer isn’t voided in the event of an emergency such as job loss, domestic violence, or health problems.



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IRS Levy | Social Security | Flat Fee Tax Service | San Diego

The tax professionals at Flat Fee Tax Service provide a valuable IRS tax debt help at a very affordable fee. Our teams are located in San Diego, CA and Clearwater, FL. We have helped countless taxpayers who have had their Social Security and Social Security Disability (SSDI) benefits seized by the IRS. The IRS, through the Federal Payment Levy Program (FPLP), can seize as little as 15% of your benefit check.
A taxpayer may have retired and now draws on their Social Security or may be unable to work due to disability and now receives Social Security Disability (SSDI). The IRS may have previously placed a financially struggling taxpayer in currently not collectible status (CNC) because they did not have enough income to pay an overdue income tax debt. Now that a taxpayer is drawing money from Social Security, do not be surprised to receive a notice from the IRS that the Internal Revenue Service is going to be taking part of the taxpayer’s check each month.

A taxpayer may have thought they were in Currently not Collectible status only to find out that their check is 15% short of the full benefit. Can the IRS really seize social security? Yes, the IRS can and will take at the minimum 15% unless steps are taken to stop, remove and release the IRS levy.

IRS WAGE GARNISHMENTWhat is Currently not Collectible?

Currently not Collectible status (CNC) simply means that the IRS won’t try to collect taxes at the current time. Should a taxpayer be placed in Currently not Collectible status (CNC), a Federal Tax Lien will be filed. If your credit is important to you, this will be an issue. The income tax debt owed will continue to accrue penalties and interest. The IRS can rescind the taxpayer’s Currently not Collectible anytime that they choose without warning. To be placed in Currently not Collectible status, a taxpayer will have to show the IRS there is not enough income to pay the IRS and meet the taxpayer’s basic necessities. Most often, Currently not Collectible (CNC) will necessitate filling out a Form 433-F (Financial Asset Form). This IRS form requires a taxpayer to list all of their income, assets, and expenses. Use the IRS National Standards for personal/ food expenses and medical expenses without having to prove your actual expenses. A taxpayer will be limited to claiming the national standards on all expenses unless it is proven that a taxpayer has a special circumstance that makes their expenses higher. A taxpayer can find the National Standards on the website.
How does Currently not Collectible status effect how much income tax is owed?
The interest and penalties on your account continue to increase.
Can the IRS change a taxpayer’s status?
Yes, the IRS can change the taxpayer’s status at any time. The IRS will take a look at your status every twelve (12) to twenty-four (24) months or so. The IRS will also look at any change in income.
Can the IRS really take my social security or Social Security Disability (SSDI)?
The IRS can and will take a taxpayer’s social security retirement benefit or social security disability benefits once the IRS computer discovers that a taxpayer is receiving a government check. As a general rule, the IRS will limit what they take to 15% per the Federal Payment Levy Program (FPLP). The IRS should not take Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. These benefits are considered public benefits and are usually assumed to be only enough to provide for basic necessities. Please note, the IRS can take more than 15% should a Revenue Officer issue a Manuel Levy.
Although the IRS is supposed to prevent certain very low-income social security retirement and social security disability recipients from being placed in the federal payment levy program, we all know that is a rule that is often broken. This screening program is not full proof so taxpayers still may have to submit a 433-F to be put into currently not collectible status.
What if a taxpayer does not believe they owe the IRS the past due income taxes?
If a taxpayer has never received a notice of levy before, a request for a Collection Due Process hearing (CDP) is an option. A Collection Due Process (CDP) Hearing will allow a financially struggling taxpayer to present evidence that the IRS should not levy on Social Security benefits. A taxpayer could also challenge the income tax debt if the taxpayer has not had a chance to challenge it before. A taxpayer might not have been able to challenge the income tax debt if the IRS did not issue the right notice or mailed the notice to the wrong place.
If a taxpayer received the notice but decided not to respond, the taxpayer cannot challenge the income tax debt in a CDP hearing. A taxpayer might be able to ask for an audit reconsideration. In an audit reconsideration, the taxpayer will tell the IRS why their decision was wrong and provide them with any evidence that will help the IRS change their mind.
If the taxpayer is Currently not Collectible should they do an Offer in Compromise?
We are talking about an actual permanent solution to the financially struggling taxpayer’s income tax problem. If the IRS has already declared the taxpayer to be unable to pay the overdue income tax debt, why not take the extra step and retire the income tax debt altogether through an IRS settlement? If a taxpayer has no assets and is relying on Social Security benefits to live on, it would behoove the taxpayer to get rid of the tax debt. Many of the same IRS rules that govern being Currently not Collectible work for the Offer in Compromise program.
During the Offer in Compromise process, the IRS must leave the taxpayer alone. That means no levies. No enforcement actions. If you have no assets and only have your Social Security, your IRS settlement should be very, very small. At the end of the Offer in Compromise process, the taxpayer will have no IRS income tax liens.
When we receive a call from a taxpayer who is or was declared to be Currently not Collectible, we explain the settlement program this way: If you were running a marathon, would you stop running when you were 200 yards from the finish line? Of course not. Finish the race. Settle with the IRS for less.
Where can a taxpayer get IRS help if they need it?
You can receive expert IRS tax representation at Flat Fee Tax Service We are “America’s Best & Most Affordable IRS Tax Relief Team.”
1. Guided by our Christian Values is one reason why we do not have client complaints.
2. Accredited by the Better Business Bureau. A Plus Rating. Read our BBB testimonials for yourself.
3. Experienced IRS Tax Attorneys work directly with the troubled taxpayer.
6. Low, Affordable Fees for everyone. 10 to 12 months payment plans.
7. Our Clients Receive Positive Results.
Maintaining household income is a basic need.

Currently not Collectible | IRS Hardship | Flat Fee Tax Relief | Florida

IRS Hardship – Currently Not Collectible

IRS Hardship is for financially struggling taxpayers who are unable to pay their back income tax debt and may not be eligible for an Offer in Compromise. The real term used by the IRS is Currently Not Collectible (CNC) Status.

The tax professionals at Flat Fee Tax Relief provides valuable IRS tax debt help at a very affordable fee. Our teams are located in Clearwater, FL and San Diego, CA.

IRS Hardship – What Does it Mean for You?

What are the options for a taxpayer who owes the IRS for back Income taxes but is unable to pay? What are your options if the taxpayer is unable to pay the past due to income tax because you have just enough money to support yourself and your family?  Once a taxpayer is declared by the IRS to be Currently not Collectible (IRS Hardship), the IRS will not take/seize your property. The IRS will not take your paycheck (IRS wage garnishment) or wipe out your bank account (IRS Bank Levy) while the taxpayer is in IRS Hardship (Currently not Collectible).  IRS Hardship will not remove the back income taxes that owed by a taxpayer. The financially struggling taxpayer will still owe back income taxes.  Every year the IRS will mail out a reminder letter regarding the income taxes owed.


IRS Penalties and Interest

IRS Hardship does not stop IRS penalties and interest to accrue.  The IRS will continue to charge penalties and interest and the IRS will file a Federal Tax Lien.

IRS Hardship Status – How Long Will it Last?

IRS Hardship (Currently not Collectible) status could last up to 10 years.  Generally, the IRS has 10 years to collect overdue income taxes.  After 10 years, the IRS is supposed to remove the back taxes.  For example, if a taxpayer filed their 2009 tax return on time, back taxes for 2009 will be owed.  The IRS can collect the back taxes until 2020.  If the 2009 taxes are in IRS Hardship status, the IRS will leave the taxpayer alone. A taxpayer may be able to stay in IRS Hardship status for the next 10 years.  After 2020, the IRS will remove 2009 taxes.

The IRS will review a taxpayer’s income situation approximately once every two years.  If the taxpayer’s income has increased, the IRS may take the taxpayer out of IRS Hardship (Currently not Collectible) status.  The IRS believes the delinquent taxpayer is better able to support themselves and pay the back income tax debt.

If A Taxpayer Has New IRS Back Income Taxes

What if a taxpayer expects to owe new taxes for this year?  The back income taxes that are owed are in IRS Hardship status.  Will the new taxes be automatically included in the IRS Hardship status?  The answer is no.  Every tax year is treated separately.  For example, you could owe back taxes for 2005 – 2008, and new taxes for 2010.  2005 – 2008 are in IRS Hardship status but 2010 is not.  The IRS can pursue the taxpayer for the new 2010 taxes but not 2005 – 2008 back taxes.

If you are in this situation, the tax professionals at Flat Fee Tax Relief recommend that you pursue an IRS settlement (Offer in Compromise).  This should not affect your IRS Hardship status. If the IRS has declared that you are unable to pay them for the income taxes that you owe, then it’s a very important step toward having your entire income tax debt settled.

If the struggling taxpayer is unable to pay off the new taxes, the taxpayer can request to put the new tax debt in IRS Hardship status. The taxpayer can continue to be Currently not Collectible but it would be so much better to have all of the income tax debt wiped out through the Offer in Compromise program.

IRS Hardship Tax Forms

The IRS will request financial information to show that the taxpayer is an IRS Hardship.

IRS Form 433-A or IRS Form 433-F – Used for individuals or self-employed requesting IRS Hardship Status.

IRS Form 433-B – Used for C Corporations, S Corporations, and Partnerships requesting IRS Hardship Status.

Difference Between IRS Hardship and IRS Settlement

An IRS settlement submitted through the Offer in Compromise program is a more complete solution compared to IRS Hardship. An IRS Settlement is an agreement between the IRS and the delinquent taxpayer to pay less than what is owed.  The IRS Settlement process usually takes approximately 10 months but can take as little as 6 months and as much as 24 months.  After the IRS settlement agreement is finalized, the delinquent taxpayer will be done. The taxpayer will no longer owe back income taxes.

There is a huge difference between being in IRS Hardship and proceeding with an Offer in Compromise settlement. During the Offer in Compromise process, the IRS must leave taxpayer alone. The IRS may or may not leave the taxpayer alone while in IRS Hardship status.  Also, while in IRS Hardship, the delinquent taxpayer could be dealing with their past due to income taxes for the next 10 years.  Most people are uncomfortable with this.  A taxpayer should be uncomfortable with this. A taxpayer may not like the thought of owing back taxes even though the IRS is not coming after the money.

To Know More About the IRS Settlement Process Read This: IRS Settlement

IRS Hardship may be a better option if a taxpayer is not qualified for an IRS Settlement. But, know this, if the IRS has already declared that a taxpayer is unable to pay the overdue income taxes, it is only a “hop, skip and jump” to wiping out the income tax debt altogether.

The tax professionals at Flat Fee Tax Relief will have a taxpayer placed into IRS Hardship / Currently not Collectible status if the taxpayer is unable to pay the back income tax debt and is not qualified for an Offer in Compromise settlement. The financially struggling taxpayer will still owe the back taxes but the IRS will not pursue the taxpayer. Our clients are able to take a deep breath and go about their normal everyday life. A taxpayer may stay in IRS Hardship status for the next 10 years. After 10 years, the IRS will remove the back taxes.


  1. No Client Complaints.
  2. Accredited by the Better Business Bureau A Plus Rating. Check out our BBB Reviews.
  3. Experienced IRS Income Tax Attorneys work directly with you.
  4. IRS Wage Garnishment – Tax Levies Stopped, released and removed in one (1) day.
  5. 96% of our clients who have submitted an IRS Offer in Compromise have received a successful IRS settlement.
  6. Very Affordable Fees. Our fees can be stretched out over 10 to 12 months.
  7. Our Clients Get Positive Results.

“America’s Best & Most Affordable IRS Tax Relief Team”

IRS Offer in Compromise | Palm Desert California | Flat Fee Tax Service

Flat Fee Tax Service announces another successful IRS settlement through their Offer in Compromise program. Our clients, Paul and Alissa V. of Palm Desert, California received a Fresh Start IRS settlement. Our Flat Fee Tax Service clients, Paul and Alissa V., will pay the IRS only $1,000.00 (1 thousand) on a tax debt of $85,000.00 (85 thousand).

That is what we call a SETTLEMENT.

Many struggling taxpayers are unaware of their IRS Offer in Compromise options. Not everyone is eligible. If you have no or limited assets and have a limited income, you need to look at the IRS Fresh Start Initiative. A struggling taxpayer needs to owe the IRS more than $10,000.00.

Call Flat Fee Tax Service for your free and confidential consultation.

Call: 1-866-747-7435


1. Guided by our Christian Values.
2. Accredited by the Better Business Bureau.
3. No Client Complaints.
4. Experienced IRS Tax Attorneys.
5. Flat Fee Tax Service clients have a 95% Offer in Compromise success rate.
6. Very Affordable Fees Paid in Monthly Installments.
7. Honesty, Integrity, and Dependability.


The IRS Offer in Compromise program consists of lots of paperwork and is designed by the IRS so that a novice will fail. The Offer in Compromise program is a back and forth negotiation. An IRS settlement is a financial formula based on many factors including your assets and monthly income. If you are struggling financially, you owe it to yourself to look into getting yourself an IRS Fresh Start.

FLAT FEE TAX SERVICE – 1-866-747-7435