Most people go through life with a general understanding of what a “lien” is, but unless you’ve actually been involved in this situation, you may not realize how difficult it can be to get things “back to normal.” If the federal government, through the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) files a lien against your property, you are the subject of “a legal claim” when you “neglect or fail to pay a tax debt.”

When the IRS makes this legal claim, the intention is to protect the government’s interest in all your property, including real estate, personal property and financial assets.” 1 This is not the same as having a “levy” applied to your property. In cases involving a levy, the government takes your property to pay the tax debt. If you have an IRS tax problem Dallas, it’s essential to get help from an experienced tax attorney.


A Public Document

If the agency files a public document called a Notice of Federal Tax LIen, your creditors are on notice that the government has a legal right to your property. Of course, you can get rid of this tax lien by paying your tax debt in full (obviously the best way to resolve the situation). When you do this, the IRS will release the lien within 30 days of payment.

The agency also has the “discharge” process available, based on eligibility as determined by the IRS. It’s possible the government may also use “subordination,” which doesn’t remove the lien but allows other creditors to move up on the priority list, ahead of the IRS. This can make it easier for you to get a loan or mortgage, but you’ll have to work with the agency to be eligible for this improvement in status. If these situations apply to you, you should seek professional Dallas IRS tax lien help.


There is one additional process you may need assistance with - a withdrawal that essentially removes public notice of a federal tax lien. This means the IRS is not in competition with other creditors for property, though you’re still obligated to pay the amount due. You can learn more about this specific method, and others mentioned, by visiting the IRS website or when you talk to an expert who offers IRS tax help Dallas.


Withdrawal options include being in compliance for the past three years and you’re current on estimated tax payments and tax deposits. You may also be eligible for withdrawal if you’ve entered or converted an installment agreement to a “direct debit” installment agreement.

Wrap Up

You can avoid a federal tax lien by filing and paying all your taxes in full and on time, of course. If you can’t file or pay on time, you should never ignore the letters or correspondence from the IRS. Payment options are available to help you settle your tax debt over time. Any time you feel you have serious communication or obligation issues with the IRS, you should contact a tax-law professional.