You hear about it all the time — the IRS Fresh Start Program — also known as the Fresh Start Initiative. What is it, and can it help you resolve your IRS tax problems? The simple answer is maybe. This article will help you know more about the Fresh Start Program, so you can call us and discuss your options with a tax professional. 

The IRS Fresh Start Program is supposed to help taxpayers who owe back taxes to the IRS but face severe hardships. Under specific guidelines, these taxpayers can have some or a lot of their federal tax debt forgiven. But the guidelines are strict, and this is why having a tax professional help you is so essential even though the IRS says you can do it yourself. 

The basic idea behind the Fresh Start Program is that the IRS cannot collect more than a taxpayer can pay — but the IRS is very tough with its standards about what you should be able to pay and what you should be able to live on. This is why getting help from tax professionals is so important. 

In some cases, taxpayers only qualify for a payment plan. In some cases, taxpayers might qualify for an Offer In Compromise, which wipes out a certain percentage of the tax debt that is owed. Some tax relief plans require a lump sum payment, while others can be stretched out over months. Here again, a tax professional can help you find the right options that might fit your case. 

Unfortunately, a lot of “tax help companies” make it sound like an Offer In Compromise is easy and simple to get. But it’s not easy or simple at all. In fact, the IRS warns that some taxpayers thinking they are getting legitimate help are actually getting ripped off by fraudulent companies. This places an additional burden on taxpayers — they have to be careful about what they say to the IRS, and they have to be careful what tax help they seek out. We have a solid reputation built over many years, so have confidence in talking with us. 

Who Qualifies For The IRS Fresh Start Initiative?

There are some basics in order to qualify for a debt settlement or relief from the IRS, and our tax experts can help you with these. At a minimum, your tax return filings must be up to date — no missing tax returns. You must also be current with your estimated tax payments, and your tax withholdings, usually with your employer, must be correct for at least six months.

IRS Tax Debt Forgiveness and Plans

There are some options for handling your tax debt. There are installment agreements for regular payments to the IRS, and there are payment plans such as the Offer In Compromise that might be granted based on your ability to pay. Knowing which plan you might qualify for and getting the application submitted properly is sometimes best handled by a tax professional who is experienced with the IRS procedures and rules.