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Can the IRS come after me?

Oradell, NJ |

I live with someone who I just discovered has serious problems with the IRS and back taxes. We own no joint property other than a small account for common expenses (rent, utilities, etc. ). Can the IRS come after me for my partner's back taxes? Thank you

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Attorney answers 4


As long as you aren't married or in business together, it doesn't sound like the IRS can possibly come after you. There aren't enough facts to be absolutely certain. It depends on what you mean by 'partner.'

The IRS can definitely levy (seize) the joint account. Consider speaking with a local tax professional to be sure, as these situations depend on the specific facts and circumstances of your case.

Robert Hoffman is a tax attorney licensed in California. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended as a substitute for legal advice. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For competent advice about your particular situation, consult your own attorney.


No, you are not responsible for your partners tax problems unless you are married and filed a joint return.

That said, and as my colleague noted, if they were to seize monies from a joint account that may affect you.

You should discuss with a local tax professional.

Most of us here offer a free phone consult.

Best regards,
Natoli-Lapin, LLC
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The IRS can levy your joint bank account and seize the balance. Since you have no other joint assets, you have nothing to worry about. You should direct the person you live with to good tax lawyer.

I hope this helps!

Ron Cappuccio
856 665-2121

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.


My advice would be to close your joint account immediately. Although you are not personally responsible you do not want to run into any problems down the road. You should advise your partner to seek out help right away to resolve his/her problems.

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