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Letter 1153, IRS Proposed Trust Fund Assessment

If you have received IRS Letter 1153, you’re associated, in some way, with a company that has a 941 payroll tax liability.  Maybe you are a check signer, shareholder, officer, or other responsible person that operates the business.  Or maybe you just work for a business with an IRS tax debt and you have no idea why you received this letter.

When a business owes a significant payroll tax debt to the IRS and can’t pay it back in a lump sum full payment, the IRS looks to assess the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty portion of the debt to the Responsible Individuals that operate the business.  IRS Letter 1153 is the proposed assessment of the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty.  The last page attached to the letter is IRS form 2751.  It gives a breakdown of the Trust Fund tax amount.

What Is the Form 4180 Interview?

The 4180 interview is part of a larger investigation to determine willfulness and responsibility of the individuals that operate the business.  The interview itself is conducted by an IRS Revenue Officer.  The IRS prefers to conduct the interview in person, but should agree to do it over the phone.  If the Revenue Officer plans to interview multiple individuals, each interview will be conducted separately.

Each individual is allowed to have a representative sit in on the interview.  Although the representative cannot answer the questions on behalf of the taxpayer, he/she can make sure the interview stays on topic and clarify any confusion caused by the questions themselves.

The questions asked during the interview are taken directly from IRS form 4180, Report of Interview with Individual Relative to Trust Fund Recovery Penalty or Personal Liability for Excise Taxes.  Did you know that Revenue Officers are advised NOT to give a copy of form 4180 to the individual(s) prior to the interview?  Sneaky huh?

Can I Appeal IRS Trust Fund Letter 1153?

IRS Letter 1153 is just what the title implies, a proposed assessment.  A taxpayer that receives the letter has 60 days, in most cases, to protest the official assessment of the tax from the business to their personal Social Security number.  The body of the letter outlines how to prepare a protest and where to send it.  So, if you’ve received IRS Letter 1153, like any other IRS correspondence, it’s a good idea to read the whole thing.

How Do I Protest the IRS Trust Fund Recover Penalty Assessment?

2 most common reasons to protest are:To Protest a Proposed Assessment of the TFRP, you must submit it in writing within 60 days of the date on IRS Letter 1153.  The IRS has 3 years from the date of the tax assessment made to the business to send Letter 1153 to the Responsible Individual(s).  If the 3-year assessment statute is missed, the IRS is out of luck and can’t collect the tax from anyone but the business.

Contact M&M to see if you qualify for a Trust Fund protest.

If you’ve read your letters and notices from the IRS and need help sifting through the abundance of information, call us.  We can shed some light on your IRS debt and the payment programs that may be available to you.



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