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Can the IRS levy on my IRA?

Cerritos, CA |

I owe the IRS a lot of money. Yesterday the IRS levied my IRA. Does the IRS have authority to levy an IRA? How do I get it back? Thank you

Attorney Answers 2


The IRS is in no better position than any other creditor to Levy against a retirement account. Some states have laws that protect IRAs as well is other types of retirement accounts. I am not sure of the specific laws in California which seems to be where you're from. In New Jersey, as well is most states, there are specific statutes protecting IRAs from collection by creditors and therefore the IRS cannot levy on the account. You should speak to a tax lawyer in your area right away!

I hope this helps.

Ron Cappuccio

If you do not like this answer or disagree, please look at one of the other answers provided. It is not necessary for you to try prove this answer is "wrong" or something with which you do not agree. This is a free service for you based on limited facts. Nevertheless, many times you need to consult an attorney with the details to get actual advice specific to your concerns. Do not put too many details in your questions or comments because this makes the information public and could hurt you. Government Regulations contained in IRS Circular 230 regulate written communications about Federal tax matters, including e-mail, between us and our clients. This is another attempt by the government to limit your rights and to extend the control of government over individuals and businesses. Nevertheless, such communications are either opinions or other written communications. This is not an opinion. It is other written communication and was not written to be relied upon, by itself, to avoid any tax penalties. In order to receive assurances of protection from tax penalties from a written communication, you should get an opinion letter. If you would like to discuss an opinion letter relating to any matter, please contact me and I will explain what is involved and what it will cost.

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Since the IRS is able to get your interest in an employer sponsored qualified plan, see, for example, In re McIntyre, July 13, 2000, US-CT-APP-9, IRAs - which don't even arise to the level of protection of an employer sponsored plan (which has a chance at being protected by ERISA) are absolutely NOT protected from the IRS. Nor could they be protected from the IRS under state law. The IRS is a super-creditor.

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