How to Pay Off a Federal Tax Lien

by Diane Stevens ; Updated July 27, 2017
Not paying your taxes could have serious consequences.

A federal tax lien occurs when the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) assesses a tax payment and files a notice and demand for payment. This lien takes effect when the IRS actually assesses the tax, even though the taxpayer usually has an additional 10 days from the assessment to make his payment. Therefore, if the taxpayer refuses to pay the assessment, or even simply ignores it, the effective date is the date that the assessment actually was made.

Step 1

Call the IRS at 800-913-6050.

Step 2

Request a letter from the IRS detailing the amount that needs to be paid before the IRS will release the lien.

Step 3

Send a check to the IRS for the full amount owed including taxes, interest and penalties.

About the Author

Diane Stevens' professional experience started in 1970 with a computer programming position. Beginning in 1985, running her own business gave her extensive experience in personal and business finance. Her writing appears on Orbitz's Travel Blog and other websites. Stevens holds a Bachelor of Science in physics from the State University of New York at Albany.

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