Property Seizures


Property seizures can be emotionally and psychologically painful—no one likes to involuntarily lose their possessions. The things we have, whether it’s our cars, furniture, jewelry, and/or houses, give us the ability to live our lives and share our lives with others. But this property can also be taken from us.

Federal forfeiture laws allow the government to take personal property and assets away from us if back taxes are owed or suspected criminal activity is occurring. Unfortunately, the government can hold on to your property for as long as they deem necessary. Working with an attorney who specializes in tax issues can sometimes be the only way to reclaim your property. They can assist you in filing a claim, and make sure you are represented fairly.

What types of assets or properties can the IRS seize?

The IRS has broad authority to seize various types of assets or property in order to satisfy unpaid tax debts and knowing which assets may be seized is important for those facing IRS collection actions. Here are the primary types of assets that the IRS can seize:

  1. Real estate
    This includes homes, land, rental properties, and other forms of real property owned by a taxpayer.
  2. Bank accounts
    The IRS can levy bank accounts, including checking and savings accounts, to collect unpaid taxes.
  3. Wages and Income
    A portion of a taxpayer’s wages, salary, or other sources of income can be levied to satisfy tax debts, typically through wage garnishment or levy on income sources such as pensions or Social Security benefits.
  4. Vehicles
    Cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, and other vehicles owned by the taxpayer are subject to seizure and sale to pay off tax debts.
  5. Investments
    Stocks, bonds, mutual funds, retirement accounts, and other investment assets may be seized by the IRS.
  6. Business assets
    If the taxpayer owns a business, the IRS can seize business assets such as inventory, equipment, and accounts receivable to satisfy tax debts.

What assets and properties cannot be seized by the IRS?

While the IRS has the power to seize various types of property, there are also limitations and exemptions outlined in the Internal Revenue Code and other laws. These include the following:

  1. Exempt Property
    There are certain types of property that may be exempt from seizure under federal or state law. These include essential items such as clothing, furniture, necessary household goods, and tools of the trade up to a certain value.
  2. Homestead Exemptions
    Some states have homestead exemptions that protect a certain amount of equity in a taxpayer’s primary residence from seizure by creditors, including the IRS.
  3. Retirement Accounts
    Qualified retirement accounts such as 401(k) plans, IRAs, and pension plans may have protection from seizure to varying degrees under federal law.
  4. Social Security Benefits
    Social Security benefits are generally exempt from seizure by creditors, including the IRS, with some exceptions for certain types of debt such as unpaid federal taxes or child support.

How can you reclaim seized property?

When faced with a Notice of Property Seizure, timing is of the essence. Typically, jurisdictions allow around 30 days for a response, although this duration may vary depending on the state. This limited time window emphasizes the importance of prompt action.

Having knowledge of the specific timeframe allotted for response and its implications is crucial. Missing this deadline could severely compromise your ability to contest the seizure. If you want to get your property back, it’s a wise move to take action and indicate to them your wishes.

Whether you have been accused rightly or wrongly, you have a right to fight back. Regardless of the validity of the accusations leading to the seizure, every individual has the right to challenge such actions and seek alternative solutions through appropriate legal channels.

Here’s how we can help you…

When it comes to property seizures, you can expect that the IRS will become aggressive. At the law office of Steven N. Klitzner, we can help you mitigate this aggression and ensure that your rights will be defended.

In a property seizure tax case, you should be aware of the various ways we can assist you. There are more options than many people may be aware of, in fact.

Some of the courses of action we take on behalf of clients are:

  • Challenging any asset or property seizure as soon as possible.
  • Filing the correct court documents that challenge the government’s case.
  • Finding witnesses who can support your case.
  • Bringing in experts who can prove that the funds used to buy the seized property were from a legitimate source.

You don’t have to feel powerless as you go through the process of property seizure. The IRS can be aggressive; you need someone who can be on your side to navigate the situation and provide sound advice. We understand the complexities of asset seizure cases and will work tirelessly to build a strong defense on your behalf.

With our expertise and dedication, you can have peace of mind knowing that we are working diligently to protect your assets and your future. Let us help you navigate this challenging situation and secure the best possible outcome for you.

Call us at (305) 564-9199 for a free, confidential consultation today.

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