Tax Lien Attorney – Summerville, SC
Is there a tax lien on your property because of a tax debt owed to the IRS or State of South Carolina? Let us help you.
Tax liens are one of the many things the IRS and state tax authority can use against you when you owe back taxes. These liens are serious business. They can harm your credit score, making it difficult to get a credit card, buy a vehicle, purchase a house, sign a rental agreement, and much, much more.
There is hope. While tax liens generally stay in place until the debt is paid or the statutory period runs out, they can be removed in some cases! A tax lien attorney can go over your options with you and analyze your case to see if and how the lien can be removed.
What is a tax lien?
Generally, a lien is a claim to property. It gives the lien holder the right to sell that property if you are unable to pay off your debt.
If you fall behind on your tax payments, the IRS or state tax authority can place a tax lien on your property in order to collect on your debt. The property it’s placed on can be real property, such as a house or land, and other property to include vehicles and financial assets. Tax liens can even prevent you from receiving additional credit.
Tax Lien vs. Tax Levy
Some people incorrectly use the terms “lien” and “levy” interchangeably when they are in fact very different from each other.
A tax lien is a document filed by the IRS/State making a claim to property you own in order to protect themselves if you default on your payments.
A tax levy is forced collection of tax debt, for example, taking money directly out of your savings account to cover back taxes, seizing your tax refund or taking money out of your social security checks.
How does a tax lien affect you?
Tax liens can negatively impact you in a number of different ways. If you are an individual or a business owner, life can get pretty difficult if you are facing a tax lien. Things you would have been able to freely do before the lien may not be an option for you anymore. Time to be a new car? You may not be able to do it. Want to sell your house and move? Probably not now.
Here are a few of the ways a tax lien impacts your life:
- Assets – Tax liens attach to all of your currently owned property and any future property you purchase during the duration of the lien.
- Credit – You may not be able to obtain additional credit or new lines of credit once the IRS/State files a tax lien. Tax liens can also negatively affect your credit rating.
- Business – Tax liens attach to all business property including accounts receivable. If you have clients that owe you money (including your credit card processing company), it may go straight to the IRS/State instead of coming to you.
- Bankruptcy – In many cases your tax lien and tax debt will not be discharged in bankruptcy proceedings. They can continue to stick with you after the bankruptcy.
- Sale of Real Estate – If there is a tax lien on your home, you may be unable to sell or refinance your home during the duration of the lien. Fortunately, there may be a way around this that a tax lien relief attorney can help you with.
Can you get rid of a tax lien once it’s in place?
There are a few different ways that a tax lien can be removed after it has gone into effect. A tax lien relief attorney can help you explore these options and analyze if one of them applies to you.
Paying Off Your Tax Debt
This is the easiest way to get rid of a tax lien. The IRS/State must release the lien within 30 days of full payment on your debt.
Discharge of Property
A “discharge” removes the tax lien from a specific piece of property. It does not apply to all property the lien is being applied to. A discharge of property can’t be obtained in every case, but a tax lien relief attorney can go through the regulations with you to see if you qualify.
“Subordination” doesn’t remove the lien from a piece of property, but it does allow a different creditor to “cut in line” and move ahead of the IRS’s claim to your property. This can make it much easier to obtain a loan or refinance.
A “withdrawal” removes the public “Notice of Tax Lien,” effectively stating that the IRS/State is not competing with other creditors for title to your property. This does not however discharge your debt. You still owe your back taxes.
Unable to Pay for Basic Living Expenses
In some situations, a tax lien relief attorney can get a tax lien removed if you are unable to pay your basic living expenses. “Basic living expenses” refers to vital expenses such as rental payments, your mortgage, utility bills, and car payments. It doesn’t include things like your Netflix subscription, clothing allowance, and gym membership.
Can a tax lien lawyer help you?
Most definitely! Tax law is full of complicated rules and regulations. If you are facing a tax lien by the IRS or State of South Carolina, a tax lien lawyer is vital.
If paying off your tax debt isn’t an easy option, getting rid of a tax lien can be difficult. A tax lien relief attorney who has experience dealing with the IRS or state tax authority can explain the situation to you and work to find a solution to your problem.
Do you have a tax lien due from tax debt to the IRS or State of South Carolina?
If you need a solution to your problem, give us a call. We can walk you through your situation and discuss the options available to you. You are not alone! We are here to help. Dial 843-771-4791 and ask for SC tax attorney John Witherspoon.
REMEMBER…ALL INITIAL CONSULTATIONS ARE FREE!