Sale of Seized Property

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[4830-01-u]

DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY
Internal Revenue Service
26 CFR Part 301
[GL-007-96]
RIN 1545-AU13
Sale of Seized Property
AGENCY: Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Treasury.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.
SUMMARY: This document contains proposed regulations relating to
the sale of seized property. The proposed regulations reflect
changes concerning the setting of a minimum price for seized
property by the Tax Reform Act of 1986. The proposed regulations
affect all sales of seized property.
DATES: Written comments and requests for a public hearing must
be received by September 11, 1996.
ADDRESSES: Send submissions to: CC:DOM:CORP:R (GL-007-96), room
5228, Internal Revenue Service, POB 7604, Ben Franklin Station,
Washington, DC 20044. In the alternative, submissions may be
hand delivered to: CC:DOM:CORP:R (GL-007-96), room 5228,
Internal Revenue Service, 1111 Constitution Avenue NW.,
Washington, DC.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Concerning the regulations,
Kevin B. Connelly, (202) 622-3640 (not a toll-free number).
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
Background
This document contains proposed amendments to the Procedure
and Administration Regulations (26 CFR part 301) relating to the
sale of seized property under section 6335 of the Internal
Revenue Code (Code). The Tax Reform Act of 1986 amended section
6335(e), relating to the manner and conditions of sale, to
authorize the Secretary to determine whether it would be in the
best interest of the United States to buy seized property at the
minimum price set by the Secretary. These proposed regulations
reflect this change.
Explanation of provisions
Section 1570 of the Tax Reform Act of 1986 amended section
6335(e) of the Code to require the Secretary to determine before
the sale of seized property whether it would be in the best
interest of the United States to purchase such property at the
minimum price set by the Secretary. The best interest
determination is to be based on criteria prescribed by the
Secretary. If, at the sale, one or more persons offer at least
the minimum price, the property shall be sold to the highest
bidder. If no one offers at least the minimum price and the
Secretary has determined that it would be in the best interest of
the United States to purchase the property for the minimum price,
the property will be declared sold to the United States for the
minimum price. If no one offers the minimum price and the
Secretary has not determined that it would be in the best
interest of the United States to purchase the property for the
minimum price, the property shall be released to the owner of the
property and the expense of the levy and sale shall be added to
the amount of tax for the collection of which the United States
made the levy. Any property released shall remain subject to any
lien imposed by subchapter C of chapter 64 of subtitle F of the
Code.
The proposed regulations reflect the changes made by the Tax
Reform Act of 1986. The regulations propose to authorize
district directors to make the required determination whether it
would be in the best interest of the United States to purchase
seized property for the minimum price. In addition, the
regulations propose to set forth factors the district director
may consider when determining the best interest of the United
States. The district director may consider all relevant facts
and circumstances including for example: (1) marketability of
the property; (2) cost of maintaining the property; (3) cost of
repairing or restoring the property; (4) cost of transporting the
property; (5) cost of safeguarding the property; (6) cost of
potential toxic waste cleanup; and (7) other factors pertinent to
the type of property.
Special Analyses
It has been determined that this notice of proposed
rulemaking is not a significant regulatory action as defined in
EO 12866. Therefore, a regulatory assessment is not required.
It also has been determined that section 553(b) of the
Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. chapter 5) and the
Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. chapter 6) do not apply to
these regulations, and, therefore, a Regulatory Flexibility
Analysis is not required. Pursuant to section 7805(f) of the
Internal Revenue Code, this notice of proposed rulemaking will be
submitted to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business
Administration for comment on its impact on small business.
Comments and Requests for a Public Hearing
Before these proposed regulations are adopted as final
regulations, consideration will be given to any written comments
that are submitted timely (preferably a signed original and eight
(8) copies) to the IRS. All comments will be available for
public inspection and copying. A public hearing may be scheduled
if requested in writing by a person that timely submits written
comments. If a public hearing is scheduled, notice of the date,
time, and place for the hearing will be published in the Federal
Register.
Drafting Information
The principal author of these regulations is Kevin B.
Connelly, Office of Assistant Chief Counsel (General Litigation)
CC:EL:GL, IRS. However, other personnel from the IRS and
Treasury Department participated in their development.
List of Subjects in 26 CFR Part 301
Employment taxes, Estate taxes, Excise taxes, Gift taxes,
Income taxes, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping
requirements.
Proposed Amendments to the Regulations
Accordingly, 26 CFR part 301 is proposed to be amended as
follows:
PART 301--PROCEDURE AND ADMINISTRATION
Paragraph 1. The authority citation for part 301 continues
to read in part as follows:
Authority: 26 U.S.C. 7805 * * *
Par. 2. Section 301.6335-1 is amended as follows:
1. Paragraph (c)(3) is revised.
2. Paragraphs (c)(4) through (c)(9) are redesignated as
paragraphs (c)(5) through (c)(10).
3. New paragraph (c)(4) is added.
The additions and revision read as follows:
301.6335-1 Sale of seized property.
* * * * *
(c) * * *
(3) Determinations relating to minimum price--(i) Minimum
price. Before the sale of property seized by levy, the district
director shall determine a minimum price, taking into account the
expenses of levy and sale, for which the property shall be sold.
The internal revenue officer conducting the sale may either
announce the minimum price before the sale begins, or defer
announcement of the minimum price until after the receipt of the
highest bid, in which case, if the highest bid is greater than
the minimum price, no announcement of the minimum price shall be
made.
(ii) Purchase by the United States. Before the sale of
property seized by levy, the district director shall determine
whether the purchase of property by the United States at the
minimum price would be in the best interest of the United States.
In determining whether the purchase of property would be in the
best interest of the United States, the district director may
consider all relevant facts and circumstances including for
example--
(a) Marketability of the property;
(b) Cost of maintaining the property;
(c) Cost of repairing or restoring the property;
(d) Cost of transporting the property;
(e) Cost of safeguarding the property;
(f) Cost of potential toxic waste cleanup; and
(g) Other factors pertinent to the type of property.
(iii) Effective date. This paragraph (c)(3) applies to
determinations relating to minimum price made on or after [date
final regualtions are published in the Federal Register].
(4) Disposition of property at sale--(i) Sale to highest
bidder at or above minimum price. If one or more persons offer
to buy the property for at least the amount of the minimum price,
the property shall be sold to the highest bidder.
(ii) Property deemed sold to United States at minimum price.
If no one offers at least the amount of the minimum price for the
property and the Secretary has determined that it would be in the
best interest of the United States to purchase the property for
the minimum price, the property shall be declared to be sold to
the United States for the minimum price.
(iii) Release to owner. If the property is not declared to
be sold under paragraph (c)(4)(i) or (ii) of this section, the
property shall be released to the owner of the property and the
expense of the levy and sale shall be added to the amount of tax
for the collection of which the United States made the levy. Any
property released under this paragraph (c)(4)(iii) shall remain
subject to any lien imposed by subchapter C of chapter 64 of
subtitle F of the Internal Revenue Code.
(iv) Effective date. This paragraph (c)(4) applies to
dispositions of property at sale made on or after [date final
regulations are published in the Federal Register].
* * * * *

Margaret Milner Richardson
Commissioner of Internal Revenue
 

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