On August 31, 2011 an IRS webinar on the Fresh Start Initiative discussed revised lien processes intended to help individual taxpayers remain in compliance despite economic hardships. The new processes increase the threshold at which the IRS will file a lien against a delinquent taxpayer’s funds from $5,000 to $10,000.
The Fresh Start Initiative, announced in February 2011, is just one of several programs the IRS has developed during the economic slowdown. Along with revised lien processes for individuals, the IRS also increased the threshold amount for small businesses in a streamlined installment agreement and expanded the streamlined offer-in-compromise program, which allows certain taxpayers to settle their tax liabilities for less than the full amount owed.
One key element of the Fresh Start Initiative is the new ability of taxpayers to request that the IRS withdraw a lien once the lien has been released. A withdrawal basically expunges from the record the taxpayer’s Notice of Federal Tax Lien, whose presence otherwise can adversely affect a taxpayer’s credit rating.