IRS Settlement: See If You Qualify for the Fast Track Mediation Program

IRS Settlement & The Fast Track Mediation Program

IRS SettlementIt has been 10 years since the IRS unveiled its Fast Track Mediation & IRS Settlement Program (FTM), yet many taxpayers either do not know about it or do not understand how it works. In this article, we will outline the basic functions of the FTM & IRS Settlement Program to encourage taxpayers who are dealing with tax debt or whose Offer in Compromise was rejected to try this program for possibly better results.

What Can the FTM Program Help With?

The IRS created the FTM program to speed up the IRS settlement process and reduce the cost of litigation fees from the Appeals process, while also making the IRS more taxpayer friendly. The taxpayer or the IRS can request a mediation agreement, which, by entering into one, initiates the FTM process.

The FTM Program was originally designed to resolve large corporations' tax debt issues, but was extended to resolve:

  • IRS Settlement Disputes (for tax debts under $100,000)
  • Audits
  • Offer in Compromise (under $50,000)
  • General Tax Collection Actions

The FTM Program does not handle cases that include:

  • Issues for which no legal precedent exists
  • Industry Specialization Program issues
  • Penalty Appeals cases
  • Collection Appeals Program cases
  • Constitutional issues

How Does the Mediation Process Work?

An Appeals Officer will be the assigned mediator on the case to assist in the negotiations at no cost to the taxpayer. They are allowed to hold joint, as well as separate, meetings with the parties in an attempt to reach an IRS settlement. They do not have the authority to accept an IRS settlement offer on the taxpayer's behalf, or require the taxpayer to agree to an IRS settlement offer. In cases where an IRS settlement is not reached or the taxpayer is not satisfied with the mediation process, they are allowed to withdraw from the program at any time and retain their usual appeal rights.

The objective for the FTM program is to reach an IRS settlement within 40 days while the normal appeals process takes, on average, 293 days. This is a great option for taxpayers, and doesn't threaten anything in cases of IRS settlement disputes, trust fund penalties, and general collection actions, but can be risky if used to mediate an auditor's findings.

Can I Have Representation With Me?

Taxpayers are allowed by law to either represent themselves or have a tax professional accompany them in the mediation discussions. All tax professionals are required to have proper authorization to negotiate on the taxpayer's behalf, such as a Power of Attorney.

Call now or fill out the form below for a free consultation about the Fast Track Mediation & IRS Settlement Program. We'll only connect you with a tax debt relief company holding at least a B rating with the Better Business Bureau.

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