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Why did the IRS assign my account to a private collectgion agency?

Congress passed a law requiring the IRS to use private collection agencies (PCA). These agencies assist the IRS in collecting certain overdue tax accounts.


The IRS placed your account with a PCA for collection of your unpaid tax liability becayou met one of the following criteria:

  • The IRS lacked the resources or couldn’t locate you

  • A year has passed and you or your third-party representative haven’t interacted with the IRS on your account

  • More than 2 years has passed since assessment and account was not assigned for collection


The IRS would not have assigned your account to a private collection agency if you are:

  • Deceased

  • Under 18 years of age

  • In a designated combat zone

  • The victim of tax-related identity theft

  • Recipient of supplemental security income (SSI) or social security disability insurance (SSDI)

  • Adjusted gross income does not exceed 200% of the applicable poverty level

  • Currently under examination, litigation, criminal investigation, or levy

  • Subject to pending or active offers in compromise

  • Subject to an installment agreement

  • Subject to a right of appeal

  • Classified as an innocent spouse case

  • In a presidentially declared disaster requesting relief from collection


Related questions you will have:


  • What private collection agencies are currently under contract with the IRS and may contact me?

  • What can I expect from the private collection agency?

  • How can I verify with the IRS that my case was in fact transferred to a private collection agency?

  • How will a private collection agency initially contact me about my tax bill?

  • How can I make certain that the contact is coming from a legitimate agency and not a scammer?

  • What if I have already paid the balance due on this account?

  • What if I have already paid the balance due on this account?

  • What are my options for paying off my debt with a private collection agency?

  • Can a private collection agency take legal action against me if I do not pay my tax bill?

  • What if I don't want to work with a private collection agency to settle my debt?

  • Is there an organization outside the IRS that can provide tax assistance for free or a nominal fee?


Read the details on the IRS website Private debt collection frequently asked questions

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