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Are back federal taxes or back state of Ohio taxes discharged in a bankruptcy?

Cleveland, OH |

I haven't file my last two years federal taxes because I owe and don't have the money to pay. If I file bankruptcy are these discharged?

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Attorney answers 5


While some taxes are dischargeable, the facts you present indicate that these would not be dischargeable. You should consult with a bankruptcy attorney in your area to determine whether a chapter 13 might be beneficial to you. It can give you up to five years to pay back what you owe. Good luck.

This answer is for informational purposes only and is not intended as legal advice or to create an attorney-client relationship.


The answer is yes and no. Is it possible to discharge back taxes, yes; so long as certain requirements are met. If those requirements are not met, then no.

A service like the one linked below can assist you in determining the best bankruptcy strategy for your taxes.


While income taxes can be discharged in Chapter 7 bankruptcy, they have to be "older" than you indicate. You should meet with a bankruptcy and/or tax attorney to look at your situation. If you have other debt you may still want to file for bankruptcy and depending on the rest of your situation you may still be able to alleviate the tax with an offer in compromise. All of these decisions and options are very specific to the facts so you really need expert advice.

This is not legal advice nor intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided here is informational in nature only. This attorney may not be licensed in the jurisdiction which you have a question about so the answer could be only general in nature. Visit Steve Zelinger's website:


You would need to file your taxes first before being eligible for a discharge anyway unfortunately. After you file your taxes, we can assess the situation to determine if and when you might be able to seek a discharge for your taxes. Chapter 13 might also be a possibility. You will need an attorney to help you navigate these issues.


Federal and state income taxes are dischargeable if all of the following are met:

(a) the due date for the return was at least three years prior to your bankruptcy filing (e.g., your 2009 taxes, due 4/15/10, are dischargeable after 4/15/13 if the other conditions are met; if you received an extension, that date would be delayed to 10/15/13).

(b) The taxes were assessed at least 240 days prior to your bankruptcy filing, subject to tolling if an offer in compromise was filed within that period.

(c) The returns were filed on time or, if late, at least two years prior to your bankruptcy filing, and were not fraudulent or evasive.

Both (a) and (b) are tolled in the event a prior bankruptcy or a collections due process hearing/appeal stayed collections .