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ROBERT E. MCKENZIE, ESQ.

ARNSTEIN & LEHR LLP


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By: Robert E. McKenzie

2-1 THE POWER OF THE IRS TO COLLECT TAXES


2-1.10 The IRS has the power to collect taxes by levying on taxpayers' property as a result of the Federal Tax
Lien. When a person owes taxes, the IRS gains a lien on all that person's assets after meeting certain statutory
requirements. The lien attaches to all rights, title and interest of the taxpayer wherever it may be situated. [IRC §
6321] Once the IRS has a lien on all of a taxpayer's assets, it may enforce that lien by administratively levying
his or her assets.

2-2 CREATION OF LIEN


2-2.10 The liability of a taxpayer for Internal Revenue taxes is personal in nature and, except for the taxes
imposed under subtitle E of the Code relating to distilled spirits, wines, and beer, does not directly attach to his
or her property. In this respect the liability is analogous to a simple debt and, without anything more, could be
enforced only by a court action. To protect the revenue, Congress has provided an administrative means by
which collection of assessments may be effected. Congress also has statutorily provided for a lien which attaches
to a taxpayer's property. The lien is often referred to as the "statutory" or the "general" lien. The following
requirements for establishing the lien are contained in the Code:

An assessment must have been made;


A notice and demand for payment must have been made (the first IRS notice meets this requirement); and
The taxpayer must have neglected or refused to pay.

[IRC § 6321]

Meeting Statutory Requirements

2-2.20 It is surprisingly easy for the IRS to meet the statutory requirements. An assessment occurs when the IRS
encodes the return information to its system of records and an assessment officer signs a certificate of
assessment. A machine now automatically imposes a signature on assessment documents when return
information is posted to the IRS computer system. The notice and demand requirement is met by sending the
taxpayer a notice requesting payment. If the taxpayer doesn't pay in the time specified in the notice, he or she
has "neglected or refused to pay the tax." Partial payment does not prevent a lien arising for the remaining
balance.

Liens on All Taxpayer Property

2-2.30 The effect of the Federal Tax Lien statute is that when any person fails to pay any assessment of tax, plus
interest, penalties, or costs, a lien in favor of the United States arises upon all property and rights to property,
whether real or personal, tangible or intangible, belonging to the taxpayer. Even if the taxpayer makes partial
payment, a lien will arise for the balance of the tax.

2-3 EXTENT AND DURATION OF LIEN

2-3.10 The statutory lien for Federal taxes arises at the time the assessment is made, which is the date the
summary record of assessment (Form 23-C) is signed by an assessment officer. [IRC § 6322] The Code further
provides that the tax lien shall continue until the liability for the amount so assessed (or a judgment against the
taxpayer arising out of such liability) is satisfied or becomes unenforceable by reason of a lapse of time. [IRC §
6322]

2-4 STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS

2-4.10 The term "unenforceable" as used in the Code means unenforceable because of the expiration of the
statutory period for collection. Prior to 1990 the Statute of Limitations for collection was six years from the date
of assessment plus such suspended, extended or postponed period of time as may, by law, be applicable. [IRC §
6502] The Revenue Reconciliation Act of 1990 extended the Statute of Limitations for collection to ten years.
[Revenue Reconciliation Act of 1990, § 1131(a)] This period was extended for all tax liabilities upon which the
Statute of Limitations was still open at the time the bill was passed by Congress and signed by the President. The
reporting of an account as uncollectible does not affect the statutory period for collection. However, a distinction
must be made between accounts that are administratively uncollectible and those that may not be collected by
operation of law, i.e., the lapse of time, discharge in bankruptcy, court order, etc.

2-5 NOTICE OF LIEN

2-5.10 IRC § 6323(a) modifies IRC § 6321 by providing that the Federal Tax Lien is not valid against
purchasers, holders of security interests, mechanics' lienors, and judgment lien creditors until a Notice of Lien
has been filed. The filing of the Notice of Lien is constructive notice to these persons that the lien, provided for
by the Code, exists. The tax lien becomes valid, with certain exceptions, against competing creditors at the time
Notice of Lien is filed. In most jurisdictions, state law requires a deed of real property be entered in a public
index to be valid against a purchaser. Where this is the case, and an adequate system for public indexing is
available, a Federal Tax Lien must be recorded in the public index to be valid with respect to real property.

Notice Five Days After Filing


2-5.20 The Internal Revenue Service Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998 established formal procedures
designed to ensure due process where the IRS seeks to impose a lien. The due process procedures apply after
notice of a Federal tax lien has been filed. The IRS is required to notify the taxpayer of the filing a Notice of
Lien within five days of its filing. During the 30-day period beginning with the mailing or delivery of this
notification, the taxpayer may demand a hearing before an appeals officer who has had no prior involvement
with the taxpayer's case. These provisions became effective January 19,1999. [Act § 3401; IRC § 6320]

2-6 RRA SECTION 3401

An Overview of the Due Process Procedures

2-6.10 RRA Section 3401, Due Process in IRS Collection Actions

Effective date is after January 18, 1999

Creates new IRC Sections 6320 and 6330

Requires new notice to taxpayers (CDP Notice)

Provides the taxpayer with new procedural rights when the Service files a Notice of Federal Tax
Lien (NFTL) and when it intends to levy upon the taxpayer's property or right to property

2-6.20 The purpose of Section 6320 is to provide a taxpayer with notification that a Notice of Federal Tax Lien
has been filed and to provide the taxpayer with the opportunity to request a Collection Due Process hearing
("CDP hearing") with the IRS Office of Appeals ("Appeals") with respect to the tax liability for the taxable
period or periods to which the lien relates. New Section 6330 similarly requires the IRS to give, in non-jeopardy
situations, the taxpayer whose property or rights to property, other than a State tax refund, are to be levied, the
right to a CDP hearing with Appeals at least 30 days prior to levy, with respect to the tax liability for the taxable
period or periods for which the levy is intended to be made. For levies on State tax refunds, the right to a CDP
hearing will be given within a reasonable time after money is received from the State.

2-6.30 If the taxpayer timely requests a CDP hearing, Appeals will consider the case and render a written
determination concerning the appropriateness of the lien filing or proposed levy. If the taxpayer does not agree
with Appeals' determination, the taxpayer has the opportunity to seek judicial review. Through this Section, the
taxpayer may have the opportunity to challenge administratively and in court the taxpayer's liability for the tax
years stated on the NFTL or levy, raise any additional defenses with respect to that liability, challenge the
appropriateness of the filing of the NFTL or proposed levy, and offer collection alternatives. Because the
taxpayer will only have one opportunity for a CDP hearing and subsequent judicial review, the taxpayer is
required to raise all relevant substantive and collection issues at that hearing.
2-7 IRC SECTION 6320, NOTICE AND OPPORTUNITY FOR HEARING UPON FILING OF NOTICE
OF LIEN

Requirements of Notice

2-7.10

Applicable to any Notices of Federal Tax Lien filed after January 18, 1999.

A taxpayer is entitled to notice of the filing of an NFTL not more than five business days after the date of
any filing.

This notice describes the taxpayer's right to request a Collection Due Process hearing with respect to any
taxable periods described on the NFTL, within the 30-calendar day period beginning on the day after the
5-day period for notification has expired. The taxpayer is entitled to only one CDP hearing with respect to
each taxable period to which the unpaid tax relates.

The determination made by Appeals may be appealed to either the United States Tax Court ("Tax Court")
or a United States District Court ("district court"). The rules for determining to which court an appeal from
the CDP hearing will be directed will be more specifically addressed below.

The running of the periods of limitations for collection after assessment, for criminal prosecutions, and for
suits described under IRC § 6532 are suspended for the periods in which the CDP hearing and any appeals
are pending. (Suspensions will be more specifically addressed below).
If a taxpayer does not request a CDP hearing within the 30-day period, a taxpayer can still request a
hearing at a later date and the IRS will provide a hearing equivalent to a CDP hearing. However, the
taxpayer will not be entitled to judicial review of that later hearing. ("Equivalent hearings" are more
specifically addressed below).

Notification is not required for any refiling of NFTLs. However, a taxpayer may still seek administrative
review of a refiling with IRS Collection, Appeals, or the National Taxpayer Advocate.

Notification is not required to be given to any known nominees of the taxpayer. However, any person
named on a filed NFTL other than the taxpayer may seek administrative review with IRS Collection,
Appeals, or the National Taxpayer Advocate.

2-7.20 Notification

Written notification that an NFTL has been filed must be given to the taxpayer in person, or left at the
taxpayer's dwelling or usual place of business, or sent by certified or registered mail to the taxpayer's last
known address, not more than five business days after the date of filing of the NFTL.

This notification will include the amount of unpaid tax, state the taxpayer's right to request a CDP hearing
within the 30-day period, the administrative appeals available to the taxpayer with respect to such lien,
and Code provisions and procedures pertaining to release of liens on property.

Properly given or mailed notice is deemed to be received by the taxpayer. Actual receipt by the taxpayer
is not a prerequisite to the taxpayer's right to a CDP hearing.
2-7.30 Right to Collection Due Process Hearing

A taxpayer to whom IRS has properly delivered or mailed notice of the CDP hearing is entitled to a CDP
hearing if requested within the 30-calendar day period following the five business day period within which
the IRS is required to give that notice.
If the IRS determines that it did not properly deliver notice of the CDP hearing, a substitute notice will be
sent. The taxpayer will be entitled to request a CDP hearing within 30-calendar days of the date of the
substitute notice. The validity of the NFTL is not impacted by the IRS's failure to provide Section 6320
notice.

A taxpayer's request for a CDP hearing must be in writing. No specific format is required for the written
request. However, a Form 12153 has been developed for this purpose. The request must set forth the
taxpayer's name, address, daytime phone number, type of tax, taxable period, taxpayer's TIN, a statement
that the taxpayer requests a CDP hearing concerning the NFTL and the reasons the taxpayer disagrees
with the NFTL filing. The request must be signed and dated by the taxpayer or the taxpayer's
representative.

The location for sending the request for a CDP hearing is the office of the IRS that issued the CDP notice.
The IRS hopes that many cases can be settled informally by the office filing the lien or Appeals prior to
the need for a CDP hearing. However, the taxpayer will still be required to request a hearing within the
30-day period to preserve his or her right to the Appeal and subsequent judicial review.

2-7.40 Conduct of Collection Due Process Hearings

The taxpayer is entitled to one CDP hearing with respect to each unpaid taxable period shown on an
NFTL filed after January 18, 1999. Multiple periods may be shown on the notice.

To the extent possible, all CDP hearings under Section 6320 and 6330 (which will be further addressed
below) will be combined.

The CDP hearing must be before an employee or officer of Appeals who has had no prior involvement
with respect to the taxable period or periods involved in the CDP hearing, unless the taxpayer waives this
requirement (in writing).

2-7.50 Matters Considered at Collection Due Process Hearing

Appeals Division has the authority to determine the validity, sufficiency, and timeliness of any CDP
hearing notice or request for a hearing by the taxpayer.
At the CDP hearing, the hearing officer is required to obtain verification from IRS Collection that the
requirements of any applicable law or procedure have been met.

At the CDP hearing, the taxpayer is entitled to raise any relevant issue relating to the unpaid tax, including
any appropriate spousal defenses, challenges to the appropriateness of the NFTL filing, offers of collection
alternatives, and merits of liability, if appropriate.

The taxpayer is not entitled to raise an issue that was raised and considered at any previous CDP hearing
or other previous administrative or judicial proceeding, if the taxpayer participated meaningfully in such
hearing or proceeding.
The taxpayer may raise challenges to the existence or amount of the underlying tax liability for any period
listed on the NFTL if and only if the taxpayer did not receive a statutory notice of deficiency for that tax
liability or did not otherwise have an opportunity to dispute that tax liability.

If the underlying liability is subject to the deficiency procedures (for example, an income tax deficiency),
then the taxpayer will be entitled to challenge the merits of that deficiency in the CDP hearing only if the
taxpayer did not receive the notice of deficiency. A common situation is one where the taxpayer defaulted
on the statutory notice and now wants to challenge the merits of the deficiency in a CDP hearing. The
taxpayer's ability to do so will depend on whether he or she received the statutory notice,

If the underlying liability is not subject to the deficiency procedures (for example, trust fund recovery
penalty), then the taxpayer will be entitled to challenge the merits of the liability only if the taxpayer can
show that he or she did not otherwise have an opportunity to dispute the liability. A taxpayer who was
previously offered, and chose to decline, a conference with Appeals concerning the underlying liability
will not be entitled to challenge the merits of the liability at the CDP hearing.

The taxpayer must raise all relevant issues in the CDP hearing. The rule of variance that applies in refund
litigation will apply here.

2-7.60 Judicial Review of Collection Due Process Hearing

The taxpayer may appeal the determination made in the CDP hearing within 30 calendar days to the Tax Court
or a District Court, as appropriate. The 30-day period runs from the date of the Appeals determination and is not
extended because the taxpayer is out of the country.

The Tax Court is the proper forum for judicial review of a CDP hearing determination if the underlying tax
liability is the type of liability over which the Tax Court would otherwise have jurisdiction (for example, income,
gift, and estate taxes). This is true even if the only issues raised by the taxpayer are collection related.

District Court is the proper forum for judicial review of a CDP hearing determination if the underlying tax
liability is not the type of liability for which the Tax Court would otherwise have jurisdiction (for example, trust
fund recovery penalty, certain excise taxes).

If the taxpayer files a timely appeal, but to the incorrect court, the taxpayer will have 30 calendar days within
which to file an appeal with the correct court.

The taxpayer is precluded from raising "new issues" upon judicial review. In other words, the taxpayer cannot
raise any issues for the first time upon judicial review, but is required to raise all relevant issues in the CDP
hearing.

The courts will review Appeals' determination concerning the validity of the tax liability on a de novo basis.
(This includes determinations concerning spousal defenses.) Appeals' determination concerning any other
matters will be reviewed using an abuse of discretion standard of review.

The Tax Court has issued interim rules to implement the due process provisions. These are number 330 through
334.

2-7.70 Effect of Request for CDP Hearing

and Judicial Review on Periods of Limitation


Any levy actions with respect to the applicable tax period are suspended during the pendency of a Section 6320
CDP hearing. Note, however, that all collection action is not suspended-i.e., this is not like the automatic stay.

The periods of limitation for collection after assessment, criminal prosecutions, and suits under IRC § 6532 are
suspended while the CDP hearing and appeals therefrom are pending. In no event shall any of those periods of
limitation expire before the 90th day after the day on which there is a final determination in such hearing.

The suspension period runs from the time that a hearing is requested until the determination or court proceeding
is final.

2-7.80 Retained Jurisdiction of IRS Office of Appeals ("Appeals")

The Appeals office that makes the determination at a CDP hearing retains jurisdiction over that determination,
including any subsequent hearings and collection actions taken with respect to that determination. Where a
taxpayer has exhausted all administrative remedies and alleges a change in circumstances which affects the
original determination, Appeals may consider issues previously raised and considered in any prior administrative
or judicial proceeding, whether or not the taxpayer participated meaningfully in the prior proceeding.

These subsequent hearings are not subject to judicial review and do not suspend the periods of limitations.

2-7.90 Equivalent Hearings

Taxpayers who fail to timely request a CDP hearing may later request an "equivalent hearing" with Appeals
concerning the NFTL and tax liabilities for the tax periods shown on that NFTL. The equivalent hearing will be
substantially similar to the CDP hearing, but will not be subject to judicial review.

The taxpayer is not entitled to the same suspensions for limitation periods in the equivalent hearing, but
collection action may be suspended as a matter of policy during the pendency of an equivalent hearing.

2-8 IRC SECTION 6330

2-8.10 Notice and Opportunity for Hearing Before Levy

The focus of this Section will be on the distinctions of the Section 6330 CDP hearing from the Section 6320 CDP
hearing just discussed. Many of the issues discussed above are equally applicable under Section 6330-i.e., the
issues which can be raised at a CDP hearing, contents of notice, opportunities for judicial review, retained
jurisdiction of Appeals, "equivalent hearings," etc.

Operational/conceptual distinctions between 6320 and 6330: IRC 6320s key date is the date the NFTL is filed.
6330's key date is the date of the CDP hearing notice (FINAL NOTICE) or if SITLP or Jeopardy situations, the
date of levy.

Interplay between 6331(d) and 6330.

2-8.20 Overview

Notice is given of a right to a CDP hearing at least 30 days prior to levy on property or rights to property, other
than a State tax refund, in non-jeopardy situations.

CDP hearing is with respect to the tax liability for the taxable period or periods for which the levy is intended to
be made.

In jeopardy situations, and in cases where a levy is made on a State tax refund, notification to the taxpayer of a
right to a hearing is not required to be given until after the levy action has occurred.

The Section 6330 notice of the right to a CDP hearing can be combined with the Notice of Intent to Levy in IRC
Section 6331(d), or issued separately. This will be addressed further below.

The Section 6330 notice should set forth the amount of unpaid tax, the right to a hearing, and a statement that
the IRS intends to levy and the taxpayer's rights with respect to the levy action.

The statement should also set forth the Code provisions and procedures pertaining to levy and sale, the
administrative appeal procedures with respect to levy and sale, alternatives available to the taxpayer that could
prevent levy, and the Code provisions and procedures pertaining to redemption and release of liens.

Notice is to be given in the same manner as a Section 6320 notice EXCEPT that it must be sent return receipt
requested if sent by certified or registered mail.

2-8.30 Requirements of Notice

As with the Section 6320 notice, a person whose property or rights to property may be levied upon must be given
notice of his or her rights to a CDP hearing. These requirements do NOT apply in the case of jeopardy levies and
levies on state tax refunds.

This notice must be given not less than 30 days prior to the date of the first levy with respect to the unpaid tax
liability for the taxable period for which the levy may be made.

Section 6330 notice need only be given to the liable taxpayer. The IRS is not required to give Section 6330
notice to nominees.

The taxpayer must request the Section 6330 hearing within the 30-day period from the date of the CDP hearing
notice, or will lose the right to a CDP hearing, court review, and retained jurisdiction of Appeals. The taxpayer
will get equivalent hearing if a hearing is requested after the 30 day period.

2-8.40 Notification

Notice is generally given in the same manner as for Section 6320 notice, EXCEPT that where notice is sent by
certified or registered mail, it must be sent return receipt requested.

Notice must be given not less than 30 days before the IRS intends to levy on taxpayer's property or rights to
property (except for state tax refunds and jeopardy levies)

If the taxpayer did not receive the notice because the IRS did not mail the notice to the taxpayer's last known
address or deliver that notice to the taxpayer, and, therefore, did not timely request a Section 6330 hearing, the
IRS will cease collection activity with respect to the tax liability for the taxable period shown on the notice until
it issues a notice to the proper address.

2-8.50 Right to CDP Hearing

Must be requested within 30-day period.

Format of request is same as for Section 6320 hearing.


As with a Section 6320 hearing, attempts may be made for informal resolution prior to a Section 6330 hearing.
However, the taxpayer must still request a Section 6330 hearing within the 30-day period to preserve his or her
right to the hearing if the matter cannot be resolved informally.

2-8.60 Effect of Request for CDP Hearing and Judicial Review on Statutes of Limitation

Levy actions are suspended during the pendency of a Section 6330 hearing if they are "levy actions which are
the subject of the requested hearing." Same suspensions apply as previously addressed with respect to the
Section 6320 hearing.

2-8.70 Jeopardy Levies, State Tax Refund Levies and Required Notices

As discussed above, the Section 6330 procedures do not entitle the taxpayer to a Section 6330 hearing prior to a
jeopardy levy or a levy upon a State tax refund.

Jeopardy levies-The taxpayer will be entitled to a post-levy Section 6330 notice and will be entitled to a
post-levy Section 6330 hearing and court review.

State tax refund levies-The taxpayer will receive pre-levy Section 6331(d) notice (URGENT NOTICE),
post-levy Section 6330 notice, and will be entitled to a post-levy Section 6330 hearing and court review.

In other cases, as previously discussed, a combined Section 6331 (d)/6330 notice will be sent, entitling the
taxpayer to a pre-levy Section 6330 hearing. {FINAL NOTICE}

2-9 LEVY EXEMPTIONS

2-9.10 RRA 98 substantially increases the exemptions from levy available to taxpayers under §6334 of the
Internal Revenue Code. The Exemption for personal effects rises from $2500 to $6,250 and books and tools of
trade goes from $1350 to $3125. The increases will have the practical effect of preventing seizure of books and
tools in trade and personal effects from many lower income taxpayers. The prior exemptions were diminished
and allowed an opportunity for the IRS to take cars and other personal belongings from individuals with limited
means. New exemptions will allow taxpayers to at least retain modest vehicles, personal items, books and tools
of trade with reasonable value. [Act §3431] [IRC §6334(a)]

07/15/2009