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IRS Help - Tax Debt Help
Non-Filed Tax Returns - Failure to File 

If you are a citizen of the United States and you make an income, you are probably required to file taxes. Some people think that not filing taxes is a better idea than filing taxes in the case that they cannot afford their tax debt. This thought is simply not true. 

It is against the law not to file your tax returns. It is not against the law to owe a tax debt to the IRS. It is always in your best interest to file your taxes if you have a legal obligation to do so. In fact, if you file your taxes but cannot afford your tax burden, the IRS will usually work with you to develop a payment plan or possibly settle your tax debt (Offer in Compromise). On the other hand, if you simply try to cheat the IRS by refusing to file, harsh penalties may be assessed.


Unfiled Tax Returns

The consequences of not filing your taxes extend beyond just your financial picture. In fact, potential ramifications of unfiled taxes include:

  • Failure to file penalties. The IRS will likely assess an excessive penalty (based on a percentage of your total tax burden) for every month you are late on taxes. The cap is 25 percent.

  • Yes, you can be arrested and charged for failing to file your taxes. You do not want to spend time in prison because you did not file your taxes.

  • Tax Lien and Tax Levy. If you continue to not file and pay your taxes, the IRS will do everything it can to recover its money. This will likely include placing a tax lien and order a tax levy against your assets, including garnishing your wages or seizing your property.


What Will Happen When the IRS Discovers  

You Haven't Filed Tax Returns

If your tax returns remain unfiled, the IRS and many states will file a Substitute for Return (SFR) on your behalf. A Substitute for Return is not to provide you with a "benefit." The purpose of a Substitute for Return is to give the IRS the authority to enforce collection. Simply put, without a tax return, there is no tax debt.

In most situations, the amount assessed will be greater with a Substitute for Return than if the taxpayer filed themselves because deductions and credits will be limited. The higher the assessed tax liability, the greater the tax penalties will be.


Some people do slip through the system and get away with not filing their taxes. However, these cases are few and far between; with electronic record-keeping for nearly everything in today’s world, escaping the IRS is nearly impossible. If the IRS finds out that you have not paid your taxes, they will contact you either by mail or with a visit by a Revenue Officer. You do not want to have a visit from an IRS Revenue Officer.

The IRS will demand that you file your tax returns (and pay) within a 30-day time period. Furthermore, the IRS may bring in a criminal investigator to help them press charges against you.

Should the IRS order a tax levy and start to seize your wages or confiscate your bank account, the IRS will not stop and release the tax garnishment without having your tax returns filed. Most C.P.A.'s and tax resolution companies will not release tax returns without payment in full. Not the case with our team of tax professionals. 

Do Not Be Stuck with the Penalties of Unfiled Taxes

Remember, it is always within your best interest to file your tax returns, even if you cannot pay the amount owed at the time of filing. If you have received notice from the IRS that you have not filed your tax returns are and you are requested to do so, our tax attorneys can help.

The IRS will not allow you to do anything as simple as an Installment Agreement or an Offer in Compromise without filing the last 6 years of tax returns. This will make you compliant with the IRS.

For more information. call Flat Fee Tax Relief. We are ready to go to work for you at a moment's notice. We offer free, no-obligation consultations and that includes consultations on the weekend.