How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Anne Your Own Question

Anne, Master Tax Preparer
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 2075
Experience:  Enrolled Agent with 25 Years Experience specializing Individual and Small Businesses
Type Your Tax Question Here...
Anne is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My wife and I owe about $115,000 in federal income taxes for

Customer Question

My wife and I owe about $115,000 in federal income taxes for 2010 (after paying about $50,000 on time - it was a good year income wise - but we [knowingly] used a chunk of the money for a down payment on a home).
We have been making $2,500 per month payments since November. We filed a 433A information form for self-employed taxpayers along with an installment plan request. We are trying to avoid a tax lien on our home.
Our accountant today emailed us to report that the agent assigned to our case has verbally rejected the installment plan request, appears to be demanding immediate full payment, is threatening to record a lien next week,and is suggesting that we liquidate our IRA account to pay the tax.
. My understanding is that a decision to reject an installment plan request must be in writing; that we have a right to an appeal, and a right to talk to an immediate supervisor if we want to challenge a decision communicated verbally. I am also concerned about the pressure to liquidate our IRA (and take a tax hit on that) when we have the resources to make installment payments. Further, a tax lien on our home will destroy my personal and business credit, trigger a possible foreclosure on my home by the lender, and thereby make it much more difficult for us to pay off the taxes owed.
We are willing to pay the taxes in full, with interest etc. We just need a payment plan to do so, and without the devastation that a tax lien might create. While in the past I have been late some years in paying income taxes (I am self employed), I always paid in full, and have never had a lien or other collection action taken against me. My credit score is over 720.
We are meeting with our accountant tomorrow. I am beginning to think that she needs to be more aggressive in asserting our position. What do you think? And, what negotiating tips might you have?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Anne replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for using justanswer. I switched formats for answering your question...the other format hangs up my computer.

If the IRS Refuses Your Installment Agreement Proposal

If the IRS won't agree to installment payments, it is for one of three reasons:

  • Your living expenses are not all considered necessary. The IRS may deem your expenses extravagant. For example, if you have hefty credit card payments, make any charitable contributions, or send your kids to private school, expect the IRS to balk. Although reasonable people would disagree on what is necessary and what is extravagant, the IRS is rather stingy here.
  • Information you provided on your Collection Information Statement, Form 433-A, is incomplete or untruthful. The IRS may think you are hiding property or income. For example, if public records show your name on real estate or motor vehicles that you didn't list, or the IRS received W-2 or 1099 forms showing more income than you listed, be prepared to explain.
  • You defaulted on a prior IA. While this doesn't automatically disqualify you from a new IA, it can cause your new proposal to be met with skepticism.

If your IA proposal is first rejected, you can keep negotiating. Ask to speak to the collector's manager. Just making this request is sometimes enough to soften the collector up. If you get nowhere with the manager, you can go over her head -- everyone at the IRS has a boss. You can complain to her immediate boss, then the collections branch chief, and then the district director. Squeaky wheels sometimes do get greased. Again, just talking about going up the ladder may cause a change in attitude at the lower rungs and get you a fair payment plan.


For more in depth information, please see below:


Publication 1660 (6-2011)


If the link doesn't work, you may copy & paste the information into your web browser:


I hope this helps.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
< Previous | Next >
  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
  • I WON!!! I just wanted you to know that your original answer gave me the courage and confidence to go into yesterday's audit ready to fight. Bonnie Chesnee, SC
  • Great service. Answered my complex tax question in detail and provided a lot of additional useful information for my specific situation. John Minneapolis, MN
  • Excellent information, very quick reply. The experts really take the time to address your questions, it is well worth the fee, for the peace of mind they can provide you with. Orville Hesperia, California
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA

Meet The Experts:

  • Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    10 years experience
< Last | Next >
  • Wallstreet Esq.'s Avatar

    Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    10 years experience
  • Wendy Reed's Avatar

    Wendy Reed

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    15+ years tax preparation and tax advice.
  • Mark D's Avatar

    Mark D

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    MBA, EA, Specializing in Business and Individual Tax Returns and Issues
  • Richard's Avatar


    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    29 years of experience as a tax, real estate, and business attorney.
  • jgordosea's Avatar


    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    I've prepared all types of taxes since 1987.
  • MequonCPA's Avatar


    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    CPA, Over 30 yrs experience w/individuals and small businesses. Masters in Tax.
  • R. Klein, EA's Avatar

    R. Klein, EA

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    Over 20 Years experience