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Old 04-21-2016, 04:59 PM   #21
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Are you sure that's accurate? I can't find a reference to "30% of forfeitures being conducted illegally" anywhere. I'll keep looking though.
Let me help you with that:
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Old 04-23-2016, 04:45 PM   #22
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Thanks NYEXPAT......

That was an interesting read. On the one hand, the IRS should be error free. On the other hand, it turns out that the "illegal" seizures were not seizures that should not have happened but seizures where there were paper work mistakes or administrative issues, such as whether the IRS chose the correct advertising prior to the auction, that were discovered in an postmortem audit.

I had been picturing IRS agents kicking in doors, barking German Shepherds and AK-47's spitting out their deadly wrath. But it looks like the "illegal" activity is clerical or administrative errors where the "victim" indeed was in violation of the tax code and persistently refused to pay but the IRS made paper work errors during the collection process. This wasn't quite as thrilling as picturing a couple huddled in their bed in the wee hours with IRS thugs pointing guns at them.......



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The sale of the seized property was not properly advertised. (Section 6335(b))

The amount of the liability for which the seizure was made was not correct on the notice of seizure provided to the taxpayer. (Section 6335(a))

Proceeds resulting from the seizure of properties were not properly applied to the taxpayer’s account or seizure and sale expenses were not properly charged. (Sections 6341 and 6342(a))

The balance-due letter sent to the taxpayer after sale proceeds were applied to the taxpayer’s account did not show the correct remaining balance. (Section 6340(c))

The tax world is noting this. See IRS Doesn’t Comply with Legal Guidelines when Seizing Taxpayer Property. And taxpayers should be too. It doesn’t mean that the tax debts aren’t valid or that the IRS doesn’t have a legal right to collect.

But what it does suggest is that 30% of the time–hardly a rounding error–the IRS gets something wrong. And that should encourage taxpayers in this unfortunate position to verify everything, and where appropriate, to seek professional advice. Be careful out there.
I did appreciate the reminder Forbe's gave regarding the "targeting" of conservative groups done by the IRS. It does give me the creeps to imagine the executive branch using the IRS as a weapon to destroy political enemies!


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After the targeting scandal, a key IRS official claimed the Fifth Amendment.
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Old 04-24-2016, 03:47 PM   #23
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Youbet: that is all I remember. I saw it on TV.
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Old 06-09-2016, 12:13 AM   #24
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"According to IRS data, there are at least 12 million taxpayers with delinquent accounts, with some of those cases referred for enforcement activity such as tax liens and seizures".

Restricting travel this way is equivalent to restricting movement. As in prisons and such.

This in effect also means that the IRS will be able to ground anyone they have a dispute with. Even if they are in the wrong.

I'm a European so not directly affected, but still find things like this disturbing. I've seen Schengen (free travel zone in EU) start, it is bliss compared to what was before.

So I hope enough safeguards are put in place.
The person would be restricted to the USA, which is very very large and not like a prison, so I don't see it as a hardship.
Nobody is talking about locking up folks who are late paying their taxes.
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Old 06-21-2016, 03:56 PM   #25
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I would agree with most here that one needs to pay one's taxes and not doing so should have consequences. However, the necessity to prove one's innocence rather than the agency proving one's guilt does seem to tip the scales on this subject though that's arguable.

Then there is the recent agency admission of targeting certain groups. Google it if you missed it - it didn't get near the coverage that the original accusations received a year ago. (At the time, the accusations were "dismissed.") Imagine the power this provision provides to anyone willing to use it for other than its intend purpose. Also, see my tag line.
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Old 06-27-2016, 09:17 PM   #26
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Would you still support the policy even if the $50,000 floor for enforcement is lowered a few years down the road. $10,000? $1,000? etc?

-gauss
YES!! Unless the taxpayer has entered an automatic payment agreement or is currently cooperating with the review
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Old 06-28-2016, 07:13 AM   #27
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Not IRS, but here's an example of State government messing up: Back in 1986 or so, I had a NJ tax refund due me. I was notified it was in abeyance because a hospital claimed I owed them money. First, I had to call a then very bureaucratic NJ tax department just to find out what hospital.
Then, I had to call the hospital to clear up the account......except there was no balance due. I told NJ that I had the proof of no balance but they replied they were "neutral" and again referred me to the hospital. My argument that being neutral means accepting my evidence as well as the hospital's fell on deaf ears.
After NUMEROUS back-and-forths with the tax department (over about 3 months), along with numerous calls/letters to the hospital, the hospital did nothing and the tax department released my refund to the hospital.
I can see similar situation with this proposal. IRS would have nothing to lose, so might as well keep restricting passports even if contrary proof was provided.
BTW, it took a complaint letter to my governor, to finally get the HOSPITAL to return my money.
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Old 06-29-2016, 09:05 PM   #28
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Not IRS, but here's an example of State government messing up: Back in 1986 or so, I had a NJ tax refund due me. I was notified it was in abeyance because a hospital claimed I owed them money. First, I had to call a then very bureaucratic NJ tax department just to find out what hospital.
Then, I had to call the hospital to clear up the account......except there was no balance due. I told NJ that I had the proof of no balance but they replied they were "neutral" and again referred me to the hospital. My argument that being neutral means accepting my evidence as well as the hospital's fell on deaf ears.
After NUMEROUS back-and-forths with the tax department (over about 3 months), along with numerous calls/letters to the hospital, the hospital did nothing and the tax department released my refund to the hospital.
I can see similar situation with this proposal. IRS would have nothing to lose, so might as well keep restricting passports even if contrary proof was provided.
BTW, it took a complaint letter to my governor, to finally get the HOSPITAL to return my money.

It seems you're suggesting, based on your experience in NJ, that paying fed taxes should be optional or, at most, voluntary. An interesting, Libertarian sounding point of view.

This idea of zero enforcement of tax collection has interesting possibilities. I wonder how many will volunteer to pay? How many won't pay, or won't pay in full, but will still expect benefits?
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Old 06-30-2016, 02:43 PM   #29
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It seems you're suggesting, based on your experience in NJ, that paying fed taxes should be optional or, at most, voluntary. An interesting, Libertarian sounding point of view.

This idea of zero enforcement of tax collection has interesting possibilities. I wonder how many will volunteer to pay? How many won't pay, or won't pay in full, but will still expect benefits?
Not at all. My point was that a government agency, with no incentive to fully research the facts, could easily do nothing to the taxpayer's detriment. Imagine a valid dispute - or better yet, proof that the IRS was in error - and the taxpayer has an upcoming vacation in one month's time. Dilatory tactics (overt or merely neglect) could force cancellation of that trip. Natch, the taxpayer would have no recourse once they were absolved of any wrongdoing.
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Old 07-02-2016, 10:07 PM   #30
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Not at all. My point was that a government agency, with no incentive to fully research the facts, could easily do nothing to the taxpayer's detriment. Imagine a valid dispute - or better yet, proof that the IRS was in error - and the taxpayer has an upcoming vacation in one month's time. Dilatory tactics (overt or merely neglect) could force cancellation of that trip. Natch, the taxpayer would have no recourse once they were absolved of any wrongdoing.
From OP's initial post:

"Buried in December's Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act is a provision that gives the IRS the right to have the State Department deny or revoke the passport of a taxpayer that has a delinquent federal tax bill of at least $50,000."

We're talking about a tax payer that is delinquent at least $50,000. This is not a tax payer who has been asked to explain a deduction or the failure to report income, but a tax payer who owes a huge amount, hasn't/won't pay, has failed to win a reprieve and is now delinquent and trying to leave the country.

I do agree with your post #27 above that the state of New Jersey should NOT be granted this authority. In fact, I see no reason why the state of New Jersey should be allowed to levy or collect taxes at all.
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Old 10-18-2016, 01:28 PM   #31
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Medieval Lords didn't allow their serfs to leave the fief either. And especially if they had outstanding debt to the Lord.

Jes sayin'
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Old 10-24-2016, 02:42 PM   #32
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Medieval Lords didn't allow their serfs to leave the fief either. And especially if they had outstanding debt to the Lord.

Jes sayin'

Someone who has more than 50000 in arrears is in all likelihood is not a serf , at least at the time of incurring the debt. People like that usually have no real intention of paying until something forces them to. A compromise of making them pay 1000 dollars for a year long passport might be a good alternative
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Old 10-24-2016, 02:54 PM   #33
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Someone who has more than 50000 in arrears is in all likelihood is not a serf , at least at the time of incurring the debt. People like that usually have no real intention of paying until something forces them to. A compromise of making them pay 1000 dollars for a year long passport might be a good alternative
If they have the funds to travel internationally, why aren't they satisfying their debt? I thought the IRS actually collects on debts, with things like seizing assets/bank accounts?
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Old 10-24-2016, 06:25 PM   #34
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If they have the funds to travel internationally, why aren't they satisfying their debt? I thought the IRS actually collects on debts, with things like seizing assets/bank accounts?
If I owed the IRS over $50,000 and I owned assets, then I would probably not keep them in a US bank.

-gauss
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Old 10-26-2016, 08:11 AM   #35
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The ACA penalty for no insurance is the greater of $695 or 2.5% of MAGI. But it is not enforceable other than by holding back a refund. An astute person can avoid collection indefinitely. I could see how it could easily rise to $50,000. Seems like they want a way to punish non compliers and this would be it.
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Old 10-30-2016, 02:52 PM   #36
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I could see how it could easily rise to $50,000.
Easily rise to $50k? Actually, it seems like it would take many years unless the person's MAGI was very high. And even then, it would only impact people who need to travel internationally. I think it's a real stretch to say that this is an attempt to enforce ACA rules.
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Old 10-30-2016, 02:55 PM   #37
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If I owed the IRS over $50,000 and I owned assets, then I would probably not keep them in a US bank.

-gauss
Agreed. And a good reason why this "no pay taxes, no passport for you!" rule should be in effect. It seems like it would only impact serious, high dollar, tax scofflaws.
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What could possibly go wrong?
Old 10-30-2016, 04:16 PM   #38
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What could possibly go wrong?

By linking IRS and State Department IT systems....
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