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Falling behind on filing taxes is a common issue, but addressing it promptly is crucial to avoid complications with the IRS. If you find yourself several years behind on your returns, here’s a step-by-step guide to help you catch up and minimize potential consequences:
Collect W-2 forms and any other income-related documentation for the missing years. If you lack these documents, request them from your employer or the IRS. Having all the necessary paperwork is vital for accurate filing.
Consider filing your returns electronically, or seek assistance from a tax attorney for a smoother process. A tax attorney can help you navigate complexities and increase the likelihood of retaining any owed refunds.
If you discover you owe back taxes, take action promptly. The IRS may place a lien or levy on your assets to recover the owed amount. Contact the IRS to explore options like setting up a payment plan or seeking an offer in compromise (OIC).
An OIC is a potential solution if you owe more than your assets, face financial hardship, and cannot convince the IRS you don’t owe the taxes. With legal assistance, you can negotiate with the IRS to reduce the debt amount. Be prepared to forfeit any owed tax refunds during this process.
Engage a tax attorney, especially if you owe a substantial amount. A legal professional can negotiate with the IRS on your behalf and work towards the best possible resolution.
Once the current tax issues are resolved, create a plan to stay current with your taxes. This may involve better financial management, seeking professional advice, and staying informed about tax regulations.
Taking these steps with the guidance of a tax attorney can help you catch up on unfiled taxes, address outstanding debts, and pave the way for a more financially secure future. Remember, seeking assistance early on is key to minimizing negative consequences.
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