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What is a revenue officer?

September 04, 2015  |   Tax News   |   Tags: , ,  

Revenue officers are employees of the IRS that collect taxes on behalf of the government. They are also responsible for obtaining tax returns not filed by taxpayers who are required to do so. A revenue office has the power to issue liens and levies to collect back taxes. If you owe back taxes, a revenue officer is assigned to your case to ensure that an effective and timely resolution to your debt is achieved.

tax officerA revenue officer can use various means to communicate with a taxpayer. S/he can arrive at a taxpayer’s residence or business place to conduct a face-to-face interview. They can schedule an interview or arrive without notice. The purpose of the visit is to ascertain the financial condition of the taxpayer and their ability to pay the taxes owed.

A revenue officer will want to learn more about the taxpayer and may ask them to provide past filed tax returns, receipts of expenditures, and other tax and financial documents. The purpose is to ascertain the individual’s ability to pay the tax debt. A revenue officer may also conduct an interview over the phone.

After conducting an investigation, a revenue officer will consider a resolution option for the payment of tax debt. The officer may suggest setting up a payment plan such as an Installment Agreement. Taxpayers need to remember that the IRS will try to collect the full amount of back taxes or the maximum amount possible.

In the event a taxpayer is experiencing financial hardship, a revenue officer will consider suspending collection activities. He or she may either postpone collection of back taxes or reduce the tax debt amount owed, depending upon the particulars of the case. A revenue officer cannot force collection when it is causing immediate financial hardship to a taxpayer.

If a taxpayer has the ability to pay their full tax debt but does not pay, the revenue officer can order garnishment of wages, bank account(s), and seizure of vehicles, real estate, and retirement accounts to satisfy the tax debt.

When dealing with a revenue officer, it is advisable for taxpayers to use legal help. They may enlist a tax resolution companies or tax professionals, or seek free assistance from their trusted legal contacts. Choosing professional tax assistance can simplify the resolution process and create an agreement that may provide the taxpayer with the best results.