It’s tax time but what while preparing your return you ask yourself, What if I cannot pay my taxes on time? Taxpayers who can’t pay in full should submit their return on time and pay as much as they can. This helps avoid penalties and interest charges. If they still owe a balance after submitting their tax return, they can request an installment agreement online or call 1-800-TAX-1040 to arrange to pay by debit or credit card. Following any of these steps helps taxpayers avoid late filing penalties, interest charges and the possibility of identity theft.
One Option is to Obtain a Loan
Most taxpayers can get a loan at a bank or credit union. If you owe $50,000 or less in taxes, are employed and earn income, you can get an installment agreement for up to 72 months.
The IRS offers payment options to help eligible taxpayers pay their taxes in four easy installments. The IRS also allows taxpayers to spread payments over four installments using the tax bill calculator tool on IRS.gov. Checks, money orders, debit cards, and credit cards are all acceptable forms of payment. You may be able to pay electronically using a bank account or prepaid debit card and IRS Direct Pay.
Ask For a Delayed Time to Pay
If you need more time to pay, the IRS may be able to delay collection until your financial condition improves. However, penalties and interest continue to accrue. Taxpayers can request a postponement by calling the number listed on their notice or 1-800-829-1040.
Dismissal of Penalties
The IRS has several methods to assist taxpayers who are experiencing financial difficulty. Taxpayers who can’t pay in full today may be eligible for a short-term solution, such as an installment agreement or an offer in compromise. In certain situations, the IRS can lower a taxpayer’s penalty amount by using penalty abatement or elimination programs. Taxpayers whose tax debts have been previously rejected by the IRS can participate in the First Time Abatement program.
The Taxpayer Advocate Service’s (TAS) Taxpayer Assistance Order (TAO) program provides options for taxpayers to pay their tax bill by reducing or eliminating the late-filing or late-payment penalties. If applicable, taxpayers should be able to determine if they are due penalty abatement on the IRS.gov web site. Penalties that apply to a specific tax year may be paid by credit card through IRS.gov by entering the amount owed and selecting the “Pay Online” button when accessing the appropriate page.
Offer in Compromise
Before deciding to pay your taxes in full, you may be able to settle them for less through an Offer in Compromise. For example, offers may be accepted for valid concerns about the taxpayer’s ability to pay. Individuals interested in applying can use the Offer in Compromise Pre-Qualifier tool to determine their eligibility. We would be happy to work with you to review your options and explain more about how an offer could help.