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of interest to taxpayers and consultants
Offers In Compromise
Tax Liens - Suing the IRS
New Tax Legislation
IRS Statute of Limitations Information
Seizures and IRS Enforcement
Department of Justice Criminal Tax Manual
Trust Fund Penalties
IRS Tax Code and Regulations
IRS Installment Agreements
Taxpayer Advocate and Problem Resolution
Freedom of Information
Innocent Spouse Relief
Employee-Independent Contractor Issues
Write Your Congressman
Time Limitatations to Prevent the IRS
from Collecting Tax and Levy
This information is intended as technical information of use to consultants
and individuals doing research. For information on tax assistance, click here.
Statute of Limitations for IRS Collection and Levy
For assessments of tax or levy made after November 5, 1990, the IRS cannot either collect or levy any tax 10 (ten) years after the date of assessment of tax or levy. See Section 6502(a)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code and section 301.6502-1 of the income tax regulations. Court proceedings must also begin within the 10 year period of limitations. Section 301.6502-1(a)(1) of the regulations.
For assessments of tax or levy made on or before November 5, 1990, the IRS cannot either collect or levy any tax 6 (six) years after the date of assessment of tax or levy. See section 6501(e) of the Code. However, if the 6 year period ends after November 5, 1990, the stuatute of limitations is 10 years. In order to come under the 6 year statute of limitations, the 6 year period must end prior to November 5, 1990.
Time Limitations to Prevent the IRS From Assessing Tax
Statute of Limitations for IRS Assessments
General Rule - The IRS is required to assess tax within 3 (three) years after the return was filed. See section 6501(a) of the Code and section 301.6501(a)-1(a) of the regulations. Similarly, no proceeding in court without assessment for the collection of any tax can begin after the expiration of 3 years. See section 301.6501(a)-1(b) of the regulations.
The statute of limitations is 6 (six) years if the taxpayer omits additional gross income in excess of 25% of the amount of gross income stated in the tax return. See section 6501(e) of the Code and section 301.6501(e)-1 of the regulations.
The statue of limitations does not apply to tax returns prepared by the IRS under the authority of section 6020(b) of the Code. See section 6501(b)(3) of the Code and section 301.6501(b)-1(c) of the regulations.
The statute of limitations does not apply in the case of a false or fraudulent return with intent to evade any tax. See section 6501(c)(1) of the Code and section 301.6501(c)-1 of the regulations.
The 10 year IRS limitation can be extended by agreement provided the agreement is made prior to the expiration of the ten year period. See section 6501(c)(4) of the Code and section 301.6501(c)-1(d) of the regulations.
Limitations on Taxpayer to Claim a Refund
A taxpayer may file a claim for a refund of an overpayment of any tax within 3 (three) years from the time the return was filed or 2 (two) years from the time the tax was paid, whichever period is the last to expire. If no return was filed, the claim may be made within 2 years from the date that the tax was paid. See section 6511(a) of the Code.
A taxpayer may file a claim within 7 (seven) years if the refund pertains to a bad debt under section 166 or 832(c) or in connection with a loss from a worthless security under section 165(g). See section 6511(d)(1) of the Code.
The above rules on limitations contain highlights of the law on limitations but they are not a comprehensive statement of all the rules. The law on IRS limitations and taxpayer limitiations is very complex. Unfortunatley, the IRS does not generally notify a taxpayer that a tax liability can no longer be collected by the IRS. If you have any questions about the law on statutory limitations and how to get an expired tax liability removed, send your email request for information to email@example.com or call (888) 712-7690.