By far the most expedited approach would be to have your tax attorney dispute the due process of the collection action. Then, you have a right to petition the Unites States Tax Court, where you can litigate the matter and resolve within a year. But in the meantime, your attorney can arrange a withdrawal of the lien, until the litigation is complete.
As far as the other suggested tactic, there is actually no IRS procedure that will follow that series of processes. Therefore, it is unlikely that you'll get the desired result, because the "next" IRS personnel that sees your file will have no directives, and therefore no direction. In my opinion, that approach will waste time, and you'll miss your opportunity fto petition the Tax Court.
PLUS, in Tax Court, you don't have to prepay the tax. Seriously, find a tax lawyer. Even if from outside your area. Find someone that understands tax procedure.
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I agree with Mr. Collins. You need to secure counsel and get some good tax advice. The IRS is currently backlogged wtih OIC's. I could take years to get a decision on an OIC and the lien would not be released until then if at all.
It also makes not legal, logical or tax sense that you would pay a quarter of the tax, get a refund and also get a lien release.
Phillip M. Smith Jr.
Los Angeles Tax & Business Attorney
Licensed before the United States Tax Court
THESE COMMENTS ARE NOT LEGAL ADVICE. They are provided for informational purposes only. Actual legal advice can only be provided after consultation by an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. The answer to question does not create an attorney-client relationship or otherwise require further consultation. Mr. Smith is licensed to practice law throughout the state of California with offices in Los Angeles County. He is authorized to handle IRS matters throughout the United States, and is also licensed to practice before the United States Tax Court. His phone number is 323-292-4116 or his email address is email@example.com.
I view this issue a bit differently. As a first step, you should get advice as to whether or not you are liable for trust fund penalties. If, ultimately, you will be, why fight that aspect? If you are liable, you would then deal with the collection aspect with the many alternatives that are available.
Now, assuming you are probably not liable, the two approaches have actually been offered by the appeals officer.
1. Pay the one quarter and seek a refund; or
2. File for the Offer in Compromise.
One of the other attorneys offered a third alternative. That was to dispute the collection action through a collection due process hearing. That may not be available to you at this time depending upon the procedural history of the case.
A fourth alternative is to work through the Taxpayer's Advocate office.
To determine which of the four to use, you should consult with a seasoned tax attorney who regularly uses all four alternatives and is fully familiar with these tools.
Our office is available to do such consultation over the phone.
Marty Davidoff, firstname.lastname@example.org, 732-274-1600. This answer is provided for general information only. You should seek advice from an attorney or tax professional.