Oregon taxpayers who owe federal tax debt may be able to settle their debt at a fraction of the full liability owed. The Internal Revenue Service has created a variety of tax settlement programs for taxpayers to repay their tax debt and help them meet all of their future federal tax obligations. One of the most popular tax settlement options is Offer in Compromise. Offer in Compromise or OIC allows the Oregon taxpayer to make an “offer” or sum of money they would be able to pay to settle back tax debt. The offer is considered a “compromise” and if it is accepted by the IRS and all of the OIC requirements are fulfilled, the debt will be settled.
The United States government has given the Internal Revenue Service the authority to collect federal tax debt which is used to fund the activities of the federal government. Under this authority, the IRS has the sole discretion to accept or deny offers made under the Offer in Compromise program. The Oregon taxpayer will not have any legal recourse against the IRS if they do not accept their OIC offer.
Interest and penalties will continue to accrue while the Internal Revenue Service is considering a taxpayer’s Offer in Compromise offer. If the IRS does not accept the offer, the Internal Revenue Service can begin their aggressive collection efforts with the detailed information which the taxpayer has provided to them. Approximately 25% of the OIC offers are accepted by the IRS at the initial application level. More may be accepted on appeal. Offer in Compromise can be expensive and time consuming.
Oregon taxpayers who have federal back tax debt and who are considering Offer in Compromise should contact a tax professional. Offer in Compromise is only one of several tax settlement options available and will not be the best option for all Oregon taxpayers.
Qualifying for Offer in Compromise in Oregon
Oregon taxpayers who are considering Offer in Compromise must meet one of the following conditions:
- Doubt as to Liability– If an Oregon taxpayer has doubts the amount of federal tax debt which has been assessed against them and the Internal Revenue Service agrees the amount is questionable, the IRS may be willing to accept an Offer in Compromise.
- Doubt as to Collectibility– The Internal Revenue Service may conclude that certain tax debt will not be collectible or the cost to collect will be too high. If the Internal Revenue Service makes this determination an Offer in Compromise may be accepted. Under this condition, the amount of tax debt is not in question, only the ability of the Internal Revenue Service to collect the federal tax debt.
- Effective Tax Administration– Certain Oregon taxpayers will not be able to pay their federal tax debt with out suffering “an economic hardship which is inequitable and unfair”. If the IRS makes this determination, an Offer in Compromise may be granted. This option is used most often for the handicapped and the disabled.
Rejection of Offer in Compromise in Oregon
Unfortunately, the approval rate for Offer in Compromise is approximately 25%. A higher percentage may be accepted on appeal. If the IRS denies the taxpayer’s Offer in Compromise they are required to send written notification for the reason for the denial and the amount they would consider acceptable. The IRS most commonly denies OIC offer because they believe the offer is too low. If the Internal Revenue Service has denied an Oregon taxpayer the right to review the Offer in Compromise information, the taxpayer has the legal authority to request the information under the Freedom of Information Act.
Offer in Compromise appeals must be made with in thirty days of the date of the denial. Tax professionals can assist with all first time Offer in Compromise offers as well as the OIC appeal’s process. New OIC forms will only need to be filed if the deadline has expired or an Oregon taxpayer’s financial situation has dramatically changed.
Appealing an Offer in Compromise in Oregon
Offer in Compromise appeals can be made informally with the IRS administrator who made the first denial decision. This administrator may or may not be willing to negotiate. If negotiation attempts fail with the administrator, a more formal approach is available by sending a letter to the IRS with in 30 days of the OIC denial. The Internal Revenue Service is often willing to negotiate a settlement to help the taxpayer settle the debt and encourage the taxpayer to pay future tax liability.
Oregon taxpayers must meet the following requirements to qualify for Offer in Compromise:
- Oregon taxpayers will need to provide to the Internal Revenue service all requested financial documentation
- Oregon taxpayers will need to complete all the OIC forms and submit them to the IRS
- All federal tax returns must be filed
- Oregon resident’s who are self-employed must make all of their estimated tax payments each quarter
- All taxes must be paid except for back tax payments outlined in the OIC offer
To qualify for an Offer in Compromise an Oregon taxpayer must submit the following forms:
- IRS Form 656- Offer in Compromise. IRS Form 656 provides detailed financial information to the Internal Revenue Service and documents the ability of the taxpayer to repay their debt.
- IRS Form 443 A- Collection Information Statement for Wage Earners and Self-Employed Individuals. The form provides additional financial information to the Internal Revenue Service.
- IRS Form 443-B- Collection Information Statement for Businesses. Internal Revenue Service uses Form 433-B to provide information to the Internal Revenue Service about a taxpayer’s business. Tax Form 433-B is only required if the taxpayer is including their business tax debt in the Offer in Compromise offer.
- IRS Form 656-A- Income Certification for Offer in Compromise Application Fee and Payment. If an Oregon taxpayer is requesting the OIC fee be waived, they must complete IRS Form 656-A.
Oregon Tax Professionals
The Internal Revenue Service provides a variety of tax settlement options. Tax professionals have the experience necessary to review a taxpayer’s financial data and determine which tax settlement program may be best. Tax professionals can also help with submitting an Offer in Compromise and with all negotiations in the OIC appeal’s process.