What is the IRS Fresh Start Program and What Does It Do?

The IRS Fresh Start program is a tax relief program that provides taxpayers with an opportunity to have their taxes adjusted and assessed by the IRS. This can be very beneficial for those who owe back taxes, are in debt, or just want to better assess their current financial situation. The IRS Fresh Start Program has many benefits including:

  • Reducing your income tax liability

  • Eliminating penalties and interest on your debts

  • Avoiding liens and levies on your assets

  • Creating a new payment plan with the IRS if you cannot afford payments now

The IRS Fresh Start Relief Program was created to give taxpayers with first-time tax debt a second chance to get their finances in order. It included:

  • Raising the dollar amount that triggered the filing of Federal Tax Liens (FTLs) from $5,000 to $10,000 at first, then to $25,000 a few months later. As a result of these adjustments, fewer FTLs were filed.

  • Making it easier to get an FTL release once the debt is fulfilled.

  • FTLs being withdrawn more regularly when an individual taxpayer enrolls into a Direct Debit Installment Agreement (DDIA).

  • Small enterprises being able to secure Installment Agreements (IAs) easier.

Who Qualifies?

Individual taxpayers who are willing to settle their tax obligation over time through an installment arrangement with a direct payment arrangement can take advantage of the IRS Fresh Start Initiative if they meet the following criteria:

  • They owe less than $50,000 or have the ability to reduce a greater debt to that level.

  • Be able to pay off the rest of their debt in 60 months or less.

  • It’s the first time ever missing out on tax payments to the IRS.

  • They consent to the installment agreement for direct payment.

  • Tax returns are current for the most recent tax year.

  • They keep up with the installment agreement, file taxes on time, and so forth.

  • They keep the installment agreement in place, keep up with tax filings, and don’t accrue new tax debt during the term of the arrangement.

  • They submit for an OIC and have 12 months to pay off the agreed-upon settlement sum.

When it comes to businesses, the IRS Fresh Start Program rules would apply when:

  • The company owes less than $25,000 and has a repayment period of 34 months.

  • The company is up to date on its federal tax filings and payments.

  • It’s the company’s first time falling behind on IRS tax payments.

How Simple Is Qualifying?

Considering that the Fresh Start Program is a federal program, you would think meeting the qualifications may be very difficult, but really, it’s a lot simpler and quicker than you think. Take the following steps in order to find out if you are eligible in as little as 3 minutes.

  1. Fill out some basic information about yourself and your back taxes here.
  2. Have a representative reach out to you to discuss your eligibility.
  3. Go through the enrollment process and finally reduce or eliminate your tax liabilities.