Can I Pay Installments on Federal Income Taxes I Owe If I Can't Afford to Pay it All at Once?

Despite the IRS being slammed right now due to COVID-19, millions of Americans still owe money to the IRS in back taxes for previous years and they’ll increasingly find themselves unable to pay up all at once.

In this article, we walk you through IRS installment agreements and what to do if you can’t afford to pay your back taxes.

Though paying your taxes through an installment agreement is just one of many tax relief options, you likely have other options and might be able to settle with the IRS or lower your amount owed. We encourage you to reach out to our firm for a tax relief consultation to determine your options.


COVID-19 forced a lot of things to shut down or modify how they do business, including the IRS.

Not only are they busy dealing with processing their usual tax returns, the IRS was tasked with processing the stimulus payments for millions of Americans.

To top it all off, they’re scrambling trying to adjust to the new filing deadline, and a lot of their workforce is working from home, making things slower than usual.

Because of this, and due to the economic hardship millions of Americans are experiencing, the IRS announced it’s “People First Initiative”.

The IRS is pursuing unprecedented actions to ease the burden on people facing tax issues. These new changes include issues ranging from postponing certain payments related to Installment Agreements and Offers in Compromise to collection and limiting certain enforcement actions.

Due to COVID-19, the IRS isn’t processing paper returns right now as they deal with distributing coronavirus stimulus checks.

They also extended the filing deadline for your 2019 taxes another 3 months from the usual filing deadline, making the official deadline to file your taxes July 15th, 2020.


Despite their immediate actions, the IRS will soon flip the enforcement switch back on, and come July 15th, a lot of people who made higher income in 2019 will likely owe back taxes.

At the time you file, you need to send in payment for any taxes due. Failure to pay your tax bill immediately often results in penalties and interest on the balance due after July 15th.

If you find yourself unable to pay in full, the IRS offers installment agreements to taxpayers who owe a balance to allow them to pay their tax burden over a period of time.


The IRS divides their installment plans by taxpayers who owe more than $50,000 and less than $50,000.

IMPORTANT: We highly recommend readers to reach out to our firm first. Our clients never have to talk to the IRS, and a properly structured installment agreement made by us can save you money and time in the long run. You might also be eligible for other relief programs or get your penalties and interest forgiven. Reach out to our firm today for a consultation. [add your contact page link].

Balance Less Than $50,000

Taxpayers owing less than $50,000 may request an installment agreement via the IRS website, by mailing Form 9465-FS Installment Agreement Request or by phone at 1-800-829-1040. You need to provide your Social Security number, date of birth, caller ID from your recent IRS notice, PIN number or AGI, bank address, employer address and the proposed monthly payment amount.

Balance Greater Than $50,000

Taxpayers owing more than $50,000 may request an installment agreement by filling out form 433-F Collection Information Statement. Filling out the form requires information regarding your bank accounts, lines of credit, real estate, total number of dependents, assets, credit cards, wages, non-wage household income, monthly living expenses, down payment amount and proposed monthly payment.

IRS Installment Agreement Details

Installment agreements require a minimum monthly payment of $25. The IRS requests that you include your name, address, Social Security number, phone, tax year and return number on each payment issued. Installment lengths vary from 120 days to 60 months depending on your ability to repay.

IRS Installment Agreement Fees

Installment agreements that take more than 120 days require a setup fee. The IRS charges a setup fee for direct debit agreement or for a standard agreement. You may get a decreased fee if you meet their low income guidelines. The IRS charges a reinstatement fee if you don't pay your bill and your installment agreement goes into default.

Our firm specializes in tax resolution. We also serve clients virtually so don’t hesitate to reach out. If you want an expert tax resolution specialist who knows how to navigate the IRS maze, reach out to our firm and we’ll schedule a no-obligation confidential consultation to explain your options to permanently resolve your tax problem.

3 Tax Resolution Strategies the IRS Offers

Taxes are a fact of life, but tax problems shouldn’t be. If you find yourself in tax trouble, the IRS has clear plans for how to proceed in collecting what they believe you owe. After sending you notices, the IRS can garnish your wages, levy your bank account, even put a lien on your property.

However, the IRS also has clear tax relief options for taxpayers. In this article, we’ll give you 3 options the IRS has to resolving your tax debt.

Note, we always recommend getting in touch with a specialized tax resolution professional to help avoid the harsh penalties and interest that accrued on your back taxes. It’s far easier to navigate towards tax resolution, if you have a professional working with you. If you’d like to schedule a no-cost confidential tax relief consultation, contact us here.

Let’s dive in to the 3 tax relief options.

Penalty Abatement (PA) - If I Can’t Afford to Pay My Taxes Why do They Keep Adding Penalties?

The IRS doesn’t like being ignored so this is how they get your attention. They want to be sure you know they are not going away. It’s like they haunt you with their ongoing letters. If you don’t respond to them the penalties they tack on is like a club they keep hitting you over the head with. Penalties are just the beginning of what they can do to your life.

The IRS may provide administrative relief from a penalty that would otherwise be applicable under its First Time Penalty Abatement policy. To see if you qualify, call our firm at [add your phone number and contact page page link].

Offer in Compromise (OIC) - Pay Less Than You Owe

You’ve probably seen the tax relief firms advertising this on Radio and TV as a way to settle your tax debt for less than the full amount.

Not everyone qualifies however. It’s important to get expert help so your offer has a higher chance of getting accepted. Before you submit an offer, you must also make sure you’re in compliance, file unfiled tax returns, and structure your offer in a way that the IRS will accept it. Having someone who’s negotiated these offers like our firm is indispensable. Think of it this way; would you go to court without a lawyer? Of course not. Well, it’s the same thing need an experienced IRS tax problem solver to represent you before the IRS.

Get On A Properly Structured Payment Plan

Your specific tax situation will determine which payment options are available to you. Payment options include full payment, a short-term payment plan (paying in 120 days or less) or a long-term payment plan (installment agreement) (paying in more than 120 days).

It’s important to structure your payment plan properly. Our tax resolution firm can help you setup an Installment Agreement (IA) or Partial Payment Installment Agreement (PPIA) depending on your situation

Here’s How We Help You Get Your Life Back

Some people don’t know what returns need to be filed or what they really owe: their personal or business bookkeeping and recordkeeping is a mess or non-existent. After we register our Power of Attorney with the IRS and get you protected, the second step we take is to get all your IRS tax records from the IRS to see where you stand.

After that, with your help, we prepare all your delinquent income tax returns and get them filed with IRS. And lastly, we negotiate the best possible resolution that permanently resolves your IRS difficulties. That may mean doing an Offer in Compromise, a properly structured Payment Plan, Currently Not Collectible Status, Penalty Reduction and more.

Most of this takes place without you ever coming to our offices. We live in a day and age where technology makes it easy for us to represent you no matter where you reside. Of course, you can always come to our offices if you prefer, whatever is more convenient for you.

Believe it or not there are laws that have gone into effect to help financially strapped taxpayer’s today. The IRS announced their “Fresh Start Initiative” which allows more taxpayers than ever before to settle up with the agency. Now is the time to take advantage of these less-stringent, more flexible programs before the IRS changes its mind again.

Schedule a no-obligation confidential consultation to explain your options to permanently resolve your tax problem once and for all.

Tax Relief and COVID-19

Much like a natural disaster, the coronavirus took the world by storm and forced everyone to seek “shelter at home” and to change their daily habits in an effort to “flatten the curve”. This meant shutting down businesses and within a week, millions of Americans found themselves out of a job.

Businesses who had record sales at the beginning of March found themselves near insolvency by end of March. Despite a $2 trillion stimulus bill, the economy will undoubtedly take a bit hit and take time to recover.

People who were already in debt and behind on their taxes are finding it really difficult to keep up with the day to day expenses, let alone cover past bills.

As an expert tax resolution firm we help people who find themselves behind on their taxes, often through no fault of their own. In this article, we’ll walk you through what you need to know about taxes and the COVID-19 pandemic, including tax relief options you can take advantage of.

Note; If you were negatively affected financially by the COVID-19 pandemic and you find yourself behind on your taxes, contact us for a free, no-obligation, confidential consultation.

Here’s What You Need To Know About Tax Relief And Coronavirus

New Filing Deadline: July 15th 2020
The IRS announced late March 2020 that they’d be extending the filing deadline for the 2019 tax year. The new deadline is now July 15th and the IRS won’t be tacking on penalties or interest, regardless of how much taxes you owe.

This gives you a bit more time to gather your documents, search for new deductions, and file and pay your taxes. It might not be true tax relief but it’s a good opportunity to seek expert advice and a better tax resolution option. As of this writing, this is the only major new tax relief option for the average taxpayer.

Settle Your Tax Debt For Less Than You Owe

The IRS has a program that allows you to settle your tax debt for less than you owe IF you meet certain criteria. They take a look at the following:

Ability to pay;
Expenses; and
Asset equity.

With the coronavirus affecting taxpayers income and asset values dropping, it creates a favorable case for an Offer in Compromise. It’s important to structure it properly in order to have a good chance of settling for less than you owe. A qualified tax resolution firm like ours can help

You Can Get A Break From Paying Your Back Taxes

If the IRS agrees you can’t both pay your back taxes and cover your reasonable living expenses, it may be able to place your account in Currently Not Collectible status.

You can request currently not collectible status by submitting the proper form and proof to the IRS of your income and expenses, as well as whether you can sell any assets you may have or get a loan. As you’ll need to be able to document your inability to pay, be sure to gather copies of all your bills, your most recent paycheck stubs, and statements detailing other sources of income such as alimony, pensions or investments.

Keep in mind that currently not collectible status applies only to your back taxes. You will still have to file tax returns, and you will not be exempted from paying current and future taxes. You will also continue to accumulate penalties and interest on your unpaid taxes. After a year or two, the IRS may review your status, and if you’re able to begin paying your back taxes, then you must do so. If you’re still not able to pay, then your status will be renewed.

What To Do Next?

There are other tax relief options that the IRS has under normal circumstances, and with coronavirus news changing literally every hour during the pandemic, it’s important to have the best tax resolution firm in your corner so you can get through these challenging times.

Remember, you’re not alone and you have options. More than 13 million Americans had already found themselves before the pandemic started, and many millions more will find themselves behind on their taxes.

Our firm specializes in tax resolution and our experts help during this COVID-19 pandemic. We also serve clients virtually so don’t hesitate to reach out. If you want an expert tax resolution specialist who knows how to navigate the IRS maze, reach out to our firm and we’ll schedule a no-obligation confidential consultation to explain your options to permanently resolve your tax problem.

How to Protect Yourself When Paying Taxes – Vital Steps You Need to Take Now

Tax season can be an unpleasant time of year for a lot of taxpayers, especially if you owe money to the IRS or State. The only thing you can do is make the most of it, prepare ahead of time, and pay the lowest amount allowed by law.

Whether you are due a refund or writing a big fat check to the IRS, there are some steps you should take after your return has been filed. Here are three critical steps to take once the tax filing deadline has come and gone.

Step #1 -- Print Off Hard Copies of All Your Forms and Receipts

Even if you save all of your documents on the computer and in the cloud, it is a good idea to print off hard copies and store them in a safe place. From the 1099 forms detailing your interest and dividend payments to the receipts that back up your charitable donations and business expenses, you never know when you will need this information.

You will appreciate having those hard copies on hand if your computer crashes or your cloud storage service fails. It takes only a couple minutes of printing, and those couple minutes could save you weeks of hassle down the road.

Step #2 -- Check Your Refund Status Or Balance Due Online

Even if you file electronically, you cannot expect instant service on your tax refund. It is the IRS after all. Even so, you should see quick action on your return and a notice that it has been accepted. Keeping an eye on your tax refund is one of the best ways to protect yourself and make sure the money you are owed does not end up in the hands of identity thieves.

This is also true if you owe money to the IRS. There have been tax identity theft cases where someone else files a tax return with your social security number, leaving you to deal with the liability or adding on to the amounts you owe.

If you use a tax filing software package, you should receive a notice by email when your return is submitted to the IRS, and another when it has been accepted. Watch your email box carefully and follow up if you do not receive those notifications within a day or two.

Once a week has passed, be sure to check the Where's My Refund page at the website to see where your refund stands. This handy tool provides a real-time picture of your refund status, from the time it is received by the IRS to the minute the money hits your bank account.

If you owe money, log in to your IRS account here and check the balance to make sure it lines up with what you know you owe. If there are discrepancies, contact your tax resolution firm ASAP.

Step #3 -- Prepare for Next Year

You just filed your taxes, and the last thing you want to do is think about filing for next year. Despite this trepidation, now is the perfect time to start getting your ducks in a row for the filing season to come.

Start by looking at your current year's return and think about ways you could have lowered your tax debt. Perhaps you could have given more to your favorite charity. Maybe you could have increased your retirement savings rate. Knowing what you did wrong this year will make it easy to adjust your strategy and save more money going forward.

Nothing can make filing taxes a truly pleasant experience, but dealing with the IRS is something every American needs to do. Now that your tax return has been duly filed and your 1040 form is on its way to the IRS, taking the right steps can save you money down the line, protect you from identity theft and make future tax dealings a little less stressful.

About JLD Tax Resolution Group

Our firm specializes in tax resolution, even if you have years of unfiled tax returns, or owe the IRS over $10,000 we can help! If you want an expert tax resolution specialist who knows how to navigate the IRS maze, reach out to our firm and we’ll schedule a no-obligation confidential consultation to explain your options to permanently resolve your tax problem.