IRS News Release  
November 16, 1992

New IRS Publication
Explains Collection Process

If you have an overdue tax bill, the IRS will be sending you a new publication which may not make paying any easier but may clear up questions about the IRS collection process.

New IRS Publication 594, "Understanding the Collection Process", covers the most commonly asked questions about IRS procedures for collecting delinquent taxes and taxpayer rights and responsibilities in the process. So that the new publication will be most beneficial to taxpayers, the IRS is mailing it with the first tax bill. There is also a Spanish language version of the publication.

Among the topics covered are:

  • What to do if you think your bill is wrong and how to take advantage of your appeal rights if you disagree with an IRS decision
  • Who to call to explain why the tax has not been paid and how to ask for an installment payment schedule or other alternative payment arrangement.
  • What happens if an employer cannot pay trust fund taxes- the taxes withheld from workers' wages.
  • What can happen if you make no attempt to pay, including the impact of liens, levies and seizures of property to satisfy the tax liability.

The IRS developed "Understanding the Collection Process" with advice and assistance from several professional tax practitioner organizations, including the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the American Bar Association and the National Association of Enrolled Agents. In recent surveys of taxpayers who had contact with IRS Collection, the IRS found that taxpayers needed more clear and understandable information about what happens when they owe federal taxes.

Readers of the publication will be pleases with the appealing layout and easy to read style of the publication. Because of good organization and clear subtitles, they can read just those sections that apply to their situations. Also, for easier reading, the IRS avoided tax jargon and used plain language in the text.

"Ten years ago, you probably wouldn't have seen this much concern over the effectiveness of a publication," said Bob Wenzel, IRS's Assistant Commissioner of Collection. "But we've learned that providing people with clear, straightforward information upfront saves everyone a lot of trouble later."

The new Publication 594 and the Spanish version, Publication 594S, is available now and can be ordered from IRS at 1-800-829-3676.

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