What is Stated on a Tax Lien?

What is stated or contained in a Notice of Federal Tax Lien?  What if there are errors stated in a Notice of Federal Tax Lien.  As a tax attorney, these are common questions that I am asked by clients, potential clients and other tax professionals, and rightfully so.  It is important to know and understand what information is stated in a tax lien, and of course, if the lien contained errors, you would want such errors corrected.  The article below has been drafted by a Denver tax attorney to provide information regarding the above tax lien questions and issues.  You can discuss your tax questions and issues with a tax attorney in Denver by contacting The McGuire Law Firm.

The content of a federal tax lien is prescribed by the Secretary of Treasury.  See IRC Section 6323(f)(3).  The Notice of Federal Tax Lien can be in paper form (the IRS uses Form 668Y) or a form transmitted electronically.  Regardless of the form of transmittal the IRS tax lien must contain certain information.  The tax lien must identify the taxpayer, the tax debt or liability giving rise to the lien and state the date of the tax assessment that is giving rise to the Notice of Federal Tax Lien.  Thus, the tax lien will properly identify the taxpayer, the amount of the lien and when the tax was assessed that allowed for the lien.  This all makes sense when you consider why a lien is filed, but what if there are errors in the tax lien?

An error on the tax lien will obviously create problems.  How can you properly and correctly evaluate the priority of a tax lien if it is incorrect?  How can you determine the validity of a tax lien if it is incorrect or the taxpayer is claiming the tax lien is incorrect?  A common error may be for the misspelling or statement of a taxpayer’s name.  Generally, if the name on the notice of federal tax lien is not identical to the correct name of the taxpayer, the tax lien is still valid if the Notice of Federal Tax Lien is sufficient to put a third party on notice of an outstanding lien against the taxpayer.  This test has referred to as the substantial compliance test.  See United States v. Sirico.  Many courts have upheld the Notice of Federal Tax Lien when there have been errors in the taxpayer’s name.  Thus, when searching public records for a tax lien there is a level of due diligence that is expected and the lien identifies the taxpayer when the tax lien is sufficient to put a third party on notice of a lien outstanding against the taxpayer.

If the Internal Revenue Service has filed a tax lien against you, or you have questions relating to a tax lien, speak with a Denver tax attorney at The McGuire Law Firm.  You can schedule a free consultation with a tax attorney in Denver and discuss your tax related questions and issues.

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