Abate Penalties to Eliminate Penalties
With an abatement, you may be able to eliminate part or all of your penalties and interest, but not the initial base tax amount that caused the penalties and interest. Most of the time with an abatement, you will be able to eliminate the majority if not all of the penalties, but not the interest. Eliminating these penalties may lift a huge financial burden off of you, most of the time the penalties make up 25% of the total tax debt amount owed.
When You Should Apply For a Penalty Abatement
A penalty abatement can be right for you if you can pay the tax liability owed, but you believe you should not be held liable for the penalties incurred. If you apply for an abatement and it is accepted, it is expected that you then pay your tax liability in full. In order to qualify, you must be very convincing that you should not be responsible for the penalties. Below is a list of some reasons for not being responsible, this is not a complete list, but gives you a good idea:
- Major family problems that you can prove, such as a divorce
- Theft or destruction of your records
- A major illness
- Incarceration or a major disruption to your life
- Bad advice from a tax expert
- A disaster that was out of your control (Hurricane, wind storm, flooding, riot, etc.)
- Lengthy time of unemployment
- Death of a close family member
In short, you will most likely qualify for an abatement if there were factors that were out of your control that influenced you not to pay your tax debts. Even if you do meet the criteria above, this may not be the right choice for you if you can't pay abated amount in full.