Federal Tax Relief: 3 Steps For More Help

Getting federal tax relief is something that a lot of taxpayers have to worry about. If you cannot pay your tax bill, you can feel overwhelmed and not know where to turn. The IRS can garnish a large part of your wages, typically 25 percent, to collect their tax amount.  There are few tax relief options available that can help resolve your tax problems.

1. Installment Plan

The government is willing to work with you as long as you agree to pay them. If you step up and claim responsibility for your mistakes, they will set up an installment plan with you. They would rather get their money from you than throw you in jail because if you are in jail, you will not work and they will not collect anything.

They will try and come up with a plan that is realistic for both of you. You can pay this money back over a long term and get back in good standing with the federal government. Contact your local IRS office for assistance. Typically, they ask you a few questions over the phone and you can solidify a payment arrangement within 30 minutes. Your first payment will be due 30 days after the date of the agreement.

2. Offer in Compromise

An offer in compromise is basically a settlement that the IRS will take for less than you owe. This is pretty rare, but it does happen from time to time. Many people hire debt relief attorneys to help them with the negotiation process. They will not do this repeatedly, so you might get one chance to do this correctly. In some cases, the government will take much less than what you owe. For this to happen, one of three conditions must be met.

  • They have to be unsure about your tax liability.
  • They have to believe that they cannot collect the full amount from you.
  • You can convince them that the payments will affect you negatively and they are without merit.

3. Innocent Spouse Relief

Another form of tax relief is available in the form of innocent spouse relief. This means that if you filed a joint tax return with your spouse, you may not be liable if the return was not correct. For example, let's say that your spouse did the taxes this year and grossly understated your income. Later that year, you start the proceedings for divorce. When the IRS realizes your spouse’s mistake, you might find yourself with a large portion of the tax bill. With innocent spouse relief, you can waive this liability if you did not know of the mistake at the time it was filed. The IRS will look at each case individually to determine if it is unfair to hold you responsible for the debt.


"Exoneration" is a term for the experience of an individual who has been freed from a burden or legal obligation. This term is commonly used when talking about financial matters such as taxes or mortgage loans. For example, if you get help from a mortgage assistance program in order to eliminate your debt, this could be considered exoneration. Another example of this situation is when individuals have been charged with tax evasion by the IRS and later prove themselves to be innocent. When exoneration occurs, the prior financial obligation is removed. This can provide major relief for individuals in certain situations.

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