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Dealing with the New York State Tax Authorities

If you owe taxes, the IRS isn’t the only tax authority you will face. Even if you reduced your tax obligation or secure an offer in compromise, you have not reached the finish line. You’ll still be up against the state tax authorities — which are a separate entity from the Internal Revenue Service with their own specific rules and procedures.          

What is a New York State Tax Warrant?

New York State is known to have the most aggressive tax authorities nationwide. Whether you owe taxes to the state or New York City, New York State can issue a tax warrant against you. A New York State tax warrant is a public record that can result in a lien being placed on your real and personal property which can result in:

  • Your ability to obtain credit can be affected
  • Your ability to buy and sell property can be affected
  • New York State can garnish your wages and income
  • New York State can seize and sell your real and personal property

Before New York State tax authorities file a warrant against you for failure to resolve your debt, you will receive a notice of the debt and have an opportunity to resolve it. You will also receive a copy of the warrant once it has been filed. To satisfy the tax warrant, the total called-for balance must be paid in full. However, if you cannot make the full payment, you may set up an installment payment agreement. 

Resolving a New York State Tax Warrant with an Installment Payment Agreement

An installment payment agreement with the Internal Revenue Service can let you make monthly payments toward your unpaid tax balance until it is satisfied. An installment payment agreement for a balance of $20,000 or less with 36 months or fewer payments can be requested online. You will continue to accrue penalties and interest on any balance that remains unpaid during this period. Collection action may be taken if you violate the terms of the tax balance is not satisfied in full.                        

Challenging New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Decisions

A taxpayer may dispute any tax department bills or notices they do not agree with. Depending upon the notice you received — and whether the time limit specified on the notice has expired — you can challenge the notice by either filing a request for a conciliation conference or a petition for a Tax Appeals hearing. 

A conciliation conference is an informal appeals process similar to arbitration conducted by an impartial conferee. At the conference, you will have an opportunity to explain your position and submit any relevant evidence. After the arguments and evidence have been presented to the conferee, they will attempt to mediate the matter. If mediation attempts are unsuccessful, the conferee will make a determination. 

Following the conference, the conferee will send a proposed resolution in the form of Consent. If you agree with the Consent, you must sign and return it within fifteen (15) days to end the formal appeals process. If you do not agree with the Consent, you will be issued a Conciliation Order binding you and the Department unless you file a petition with the Division of Tax Appeals for a hearing.

Contact an Experienced New York Tax Attorney

Whether you’re a business owner or an individual taxpayer, failing to understand your tax obligations can have steep consequences. Offering skillful advice and relentless representation, Brinen & Associates provides critical guidance for clients regarding a wide variety of tax matters at both the state and federal levels. Call (212) 330-8151 or send us a message to learn more about how we can help you and your business.          

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