McKellar & Easter, Attorneys at Law We protect what's most important
Contact Us For A Free Telephone Consultation 865-566-0125 877-482-9767

IRS' new passport restrictions scheduled to take effect next month

Six years ago, the Government Accountability Office, the independent congressional watchdog tasked with helping "improve the performance and ensure the accountability of the federal government," released a rather eye-opening report examining the feasibility of leveraging passports as a tax collection tool.

Specifically, this GAO report determined that in 2008 alone, passports were issued to 224,000 people who collectively owed over $5.8 billion in outstanding federal taxes. Based on these findings, it urged the Internal Revenue Service and the State Department to begin collaboration on the matter as soon as possible.

Fast forward to 2015 and Congress passed what is known as the Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act -- or the FAST ACT. Buried within the text of this law was a provision calling for the creation of a new section in the Internal Revenue Code mandating that the IRS work with the State Department to revoke, deny or limit the ability of individuals with "seriously delinquent tax debt" to use their passports.

Interestingly enough, despite the fact that this provision took immediate effect, it has taken close to two years for the two agencies to work out the logistics of the program. However, recent reports from the IRS indicate that the program will be officially rolled out next month.

The first questions that naturally arise for most people now are what exactly constitutes "seriously delinquent tax debt" and who exactly is covered by the newly minted IRC Section 7345.

According to reports, both those possessing passports and those looking to secure passports are covered by the new section. As to what constitutes seriously delinquent tax debt, it includes anyone with a legally enforceable tax debt of more than $50,000 (unpaid taxes, interest and penalties combined) who satisfies one of the following circumstances:

  • A levy has been issued, or
  • A lien has been filed and all administrative remedies denied or lapsed        

We'll continue discussing this important development in future posts, including examining those scenarios in which individuals who technically have seriously delinquent tax debt are nevertheless considered exempt from passport restrictions.

In the meantime, consider speaking with an experienced legal professional if you have questions or concerns relating to tax debt or other tax-related matters as soon as possible.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Experienced. Committed. Respected.

Mr. McKellar was voted by his peers as a “Top Attorney” by Knoxville’s CityView magazine in its 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 editions. In 2014, 2015, and 2016, Mr. McKellar was selected as a member of the “Top 100 Trial Lawyers” by the National Trial Lawyers.

Ms. Easter was voted by her peers as a “Top Attorney” in Cityview Magazine for Family Law / Divorce / Child Support in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

  • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • Your Partner in Practice | KBA Proud member | Knoxville Bar Association
  • Avvo Rating 10.0 Superb
Start Now. Contact Us Today.

Have Questions? We Have Answers.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Office Locations

Knoxville Office
625 Market Street, 7th Floor
Knoxville, TN 37902

Toll Free: 877-482-9767
Phone: 865-566-0125
Fax: 865-566-0126
Map & Directions

Nashville Office
424 Church Street, Suite 2000
Nashville, TN 37219

Map & Directions

Atlanta Office
Riverwood Center
3350 Riverwood Parkway, Suite 1900
Atlanta, GA 30339

Map & Directions