Victim of IRS Collections Share Their Tax Relief Story
Anthony Green was forced to relocate, sell his car, and give up his financial freedom in 2020 due to the global pandemic. CSNBC reported 20.5 million jobs were lost in April, and the unemployment rate jumped to 14.7% as a result. The economy took a plunge, and financial dread took hold of most of our nation. Green was not spared from these numbers and found himself in a rut due to his $20,000 tax liability.
At the age of 46, this Texan chef had no idea he would be facing so much financial hardship at this point in his life.
Having a Tax Liability During a Pandemic
Green shared that he found himself in tax debt due to his accountant making a mistake on his deductions. Before the government-mandated shutdowns, he was making payments to the IRS. It was a hassle and just barely within his monthly budget. However, after his restaurant was forced to close, he had no income and no way to keep up with his payments to the IRS.
He had to downsize from a house to an apartment because he couldn’t renew his lease. The Greens then had to sell their family car to make payments. While they were able to decrease the overall tax debt, he and his wife had other expenses that also required their attention. Moreover, Green still had a tax debt of over $15,000 with rising interest and penalties.
Green elaborated on his financial situation, saying, “I couldn’t work due to the pandemic, and I couldn’t force another bill to fit into my budget. I have a wife and two young kids to provide for, so there was no way that I was going to pay $500 a month! I kept thinking to myself that there had to be another way. So, I started doing my own research, and that’s when I found out about the Fresh Start Program.”
How exactly did Anthony beat the IRS?
“The federal government created this program about a decade ago; it’s called Fresh Start. It helps people reduce their tax debt, but I never knew it existed. My friends never heard of it either,” Green shared.
The Fresh Start Program provides relief for taxpayers that are facing financial hardship. While the IRS has a publication all about the program online, they rarely promote it. We discovered that because the IRS profits more from collections, they prefer not to promote the Fresh Start Program. It is offered when asked about, but the information doesn’t come up voluntarily.
“I found a neat survey online to see if I qualify for the program. It was really brief and didn’t require personal information. Then I consulted with an advocate to learn more about the program. It turned out that I qualified for relief and was able to get my balance reduced to only $500!” Anthony Green’s new balance was paid in two installments, leaving him debt-free in time for the new year.
“It wasn’t an easy rode. The IRS put up a fight and didn’t want to reduce my debt at first. I was fortunate to have the help of my advocate team, who gave me advice and taught me about negotiating with the IRS.” The remarkable part of Green’s story is his triumphant victory in these negotiations.
Who Qualifies for the Fresh Start Program?
We asked Anthony if he would recommend using the Fresh Start Program. “Absolutely!” He replied, “I encourage everyone to do the research and take one of the qualifying surveys that I took. You never know!”
The same survey that Anthony Green took can be found here.
Where is Anthony Green now?
The Greens are hoping to re-open their restaurant in 2021, and with their newfound knowledge, they will handle their taxes differently in the future. They’re “optimistic about the new year,” and we’re rooting for them!