I am behind in 941 payments. The IRS agent said not to hire an attorney as we can work together. Is that true?

Asked 3 months ago - Portland, OR

I owe payroll taxes for 2013. I am diligently trying to keep current on 2014 taxes but the IRS agent keeps saying she is closing my doors. I am making every effort to pay the taxes, but it is the slow season and I don't have the money.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. James Oberholtzer


    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Consult an attorney immediately. The IRS should not be threatening you with closure and telling you at the same time they will work with you.
    You, on the other hand cannot have employees and not pay the employment taxes. You need some clear advice about your options.

    LEGAL DISCLAIMER James Oberholtzer is licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the States of... more
  2. Joanne Reisman

    Contributor Level 16


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You probably will get shut down if you don't make your current payroll taxes and pay something towards the arrears. I don't know what an attorney can do to help as this type of tax is the most vicious type of debt - you can't discharge it in bankruptcy. But you can certainly talk to an attorney and the IRS agent shouldn't suggest otherwise.

    I think you would benefit more from talking to a book keeper and a CPA that can help you figure out how to make your business more profitable by showing you where your money is going and helping you make decisions on cutting costs.

    You may need to work more hours and rely less on employees to get caught up. At some point you may just need to admit that your business isn't viable and close it down.

    The comments by this author to questions posted on Avvo are designed to foster a general understanding of what... more
  3. Adam Thomas Brewer


    Contributor Level 5


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . This is an easy one. Call a tax attorney immediately.

    The IRS agent will only work with you as long as you can meet each of her demands for payment. You need a strong advocate to push back on the agent's demands for monthly payments or lump sum payments.

    I meet with clients every week who have tried to work with the IRS agent without the assistance of a tax attorney. From my experience the cases almost always follow the same pattern:
    1. The agent will put the taxpayer on a payment plan they can't afford,
    2. The taxpayer defaults,
    3. The agent takes collection action such as levying the taxpayers bank account,
    4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 until the business is forced to close.

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