It is mind-boggling how many assistance programs are being rolled out by the government and companies alike. The IRS released last week the People First Initiative. I interviewed IRS Expert Dan Pilla on this last week. LINK. It is worth a listen.
So not to create confusion, here is the language in the document. I am not going to cover everything. The list is long. I am just going to hit the items that probably would be the most popular.
Existing Installment Agreements –For taxpayers under an existing Installment Agreement, payments due between April 1 and July 15, 2020, are suspended. Taxpayers who are currently unable to comply with the terms of an Installment Payment Agreement, including a Direct Deposit Installment Agreement, may suspend payments during this period if they prefer. Furthermore, the IRS will not default any Installment Agreements during this period. By law, interest will continue to accrue on any unpaid balances.
Dan recommended (just to be safe) to call the IRS and tell them you are planning on taking advantage of the deferral. The downside to that advice is that it might be impossible to get through. A second thought would be to send a certified letter stating your intent. It clearly says that the IRS will not default any installment agreements during this period. You are not required to contact them. Dan noted a paper trail is always a good thing with the IRS.
Offers in Compromise (OIC) – The IRS is taking several steps to assist taxpayers in various stages of the OIC process:
• Pending OIC applications – The IRS will allow taxpayers until July 15 to provide requested additional information to support a pending OIC. Also, the IRS will not close any pending OIC request before July 15, 2020, without the taxpayer’s consent.
• OIC Payments – Taxpayers have the option of suspending all payments on accepted OICs until July 15, 2020, although by law, interest will continue to accrue on any unpaid balances.
• Delinquent Return Filings - The IRS will not default an OIC for those taxpayers who are delinquent in filing their tax return for the tax year 2018. However, taxpayers should file any delinquent 2018 return (and their 2019 return) on or before July 15, 2020.
• New OIC Applications – The IRS reminds people facing a liability exceeding their net worth that the OIC process is designed to resolve outstanding tax liabilities by providing a “Fresh Start.” Further information is available at IRS.gov
Here is a link to the entire program - LINK
Bottom Line - If you are delinquent with the IRS, there might not be a better time to get caught up and current. They are doing everything possible to help taxpayers!