Passport may be Revoked if you have Tax Issues

There was a law passed, sometime ago now, that allows your tax issues to affect your international travel plans.

The Internal Revenue Service is set to enforce the directives beginning January of 2018.

Under this law, governed by Internal Revenue Code Section 7345, the IRS will notify the State Department to revoke your current passport and/or deny passport applications due to ‘certain’ tax delinquencies.

The law also gives the IRS discretionary enforcement options.

The State Department generally will not issue a passport to you after receiving certification from the IRS.

What does this mean for your current or future travel plans?

If you already have a U.S. passport, you can use your passport until you are notified by the State Department that it has been revoked.

What if I need my passport to keep my job?

You must fully pay the balance, or make an alternative payment arrangement to have your certification reversed.

How will I know if my passport is revoked?

The IRS will send written notice by regular mail to your last known address.  This is usually the address provided on your last filed tax return.

However, Taxpayer Advocate Service has identified cases in which taxpayers affected are not receiving proper written notification of revocation status.

“The passport language in the broader [Collection Due Process] notice is delivered at a time when the taxpayer is focusing on resolution of the debt and claiming [Collection Due Process] rights – thus the language is buried among the other information and may not constitute effective notice.’ – National Taxpayer Advocate. (2017, July 7). The IRS’s New Passport Program: Why Notice to Taxpayers Matters (Part 1 of 2). Retrieved November 07, 2017, from https://taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/news/the-irs-s-new-passport-program-why-notice-to-taxpayers-matters-part-1-of-2

 

What if I satisfied or ‘settled’ my tax debt?

The IRS will make this reversal within 30 days and provide notification to the State Department as soon as practical.

Because revocation will not be reversed automatically, there are cases in which an application of reversal may be required.  You should receive a written notice of reversal in the mail.

Contact your tax professional to determine actions appropriate to ‘settle’ your seriously delinquent tax debt.

Once you ‘settle’ your tax debt or make appropriate arrangements, there are remedies to reverse the delinquent status with the State Department and remove restrictions for your passport.

You may contact the State Department at the National Passport Information Center to verify if your passport status: 1.877.487.2778.

If you have tax issues – obtaining representative may be crucial.  Review our blog on benefits of tax representation.

Read more: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/revocation-or-denial-of-passport-in-case-of-certain-unpaid-taxes

Use your Tax Refund to Buy Savings Bonds

Did you know you could purchase Savings Bonds with your Tax Refund?

The option to purchase savings bonds via tax refund, for yourself or another person became available in 2010.

This is a great gift to your children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews.  The bonds will be mailed to your address with the beneficiary’s name on the bond.

Do I have to use all of my refund to purchase bonds?

  • You can use all or part of your tax refund to purchase I bonds.
  • Your request for bonds must be in increments of $50.
  • Any remaining refund amount not used to purchase bonds will be mailed to you as a paper check or you may elect to have the remaining amount directly deposited into a checking or savings account.

Can I buy savings bonds for a child, grandchild or someone else using this tax refund method?

  • Yes. You can use your refund to buy savings bonds and designate ownership or co-ownership for someone else, such as a child, grandchild or anyone, or elect a beneficiary using form 8888.

Benefits of Savings Bond (read in link): https://www.treasurydirect.gov/indiv/research/indepth/ibonds/res_ibonds.htm

Calculate the Value of Savings Bonds (select link):  https://www.treasurydirect.gov/indiv/research/indepth/ibonds/res_ibonds.htm

 

If you are a client and interested in purchasing Savings Bonds this upcoming tax season, let us know or contact our office at 508.203.1676.


  1. https://www.irs.gov/refunds/using-your-income-tax-refund-to-save-by-buying-us-savings-bonds
  2. https://www.treasurydirect.gov/indiv/products/prod_ibonds_glance.htm

 

Taxpayer learns a lesson: Deductions Disallowed

When selecting a licensed professional to handle your tax filings and issues, make sure their area of focus has or is in taxation.

Larry bird’s business partner, Christopher Cooke, learned this lesson the hard way.

When attempting to take deductions for a property used as a Bed & Breakfast, his response, upon examination, to the Tax Court was that he relied on the advice of his CPA.  The Tax Court determined that his deductions would be disallowed and subject to accuracy related penalties.

“[Mr. Cooke] offered no evidence of the CPA’s competence as a tax professional or that he provided the CPA with all the necessary and accurate information required to provide proper advice. Thus, the Tax Court found that he was liable for the penalties.”  –  Howard, Beth. “Deductions Disallowed for Operator of Larry Bird’s Former House as a B&B.” Tax Matters, Journal of Accountancy, 1 Aug. 2017, www.journalofaccountancy.com/issues/2017/aug/operating-deductions-disallowed-larry-bird-former-house.

When seeking advice, ensure you are dealing with a licensed tax professional.