IRS hires private firms to collect unpaid federal taxes beginning spring 2017

Photo by spxChrome/Getty Images; St. George News

PHOENIX, Ariz. — The Internal Revenue Service announced recently it plans to begin private collection of certain overdue federal tax debts next spring and has selected four contractors to implement the new program.

The new program, authorized under a federal law enacted by Congress last December, enables these designated contractors to collect outstanding inactive tax receivables on the government’s behalf.

As a condition of receiving a contract, these agencies must respect taxpayer rights, including abiding by the consumer protection provisions of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

The IRS has selected the following contractors to carry out this program:

CBE Group
1309 Technology Pkwy
Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613

ConServe
200 CrossKeys Office Park
Fairport, New York 14450

Performant
333 N Canyons Pkwy
Livermore, California 94551

Pioneer
325 Daniel Zenker Dr.
Horseheads, New York 14845

These private collection agencies will work on accounts where taxpayers owe money, but the IRS is no longer actively working their accounts.

Several factors contribute to the IRS assigning these accounts to private collection agencies, including older, overdue tax accounts or lack of resources preventing the IRS from working the cases.

The IRS will give each taxpayer and their representative written notice that their account is being transferred to a private collection agency. The agency will then send a second, separate letter to the taxpayer and their representative confirming this transfer.

Private collection agencies will be able to identify themselves as contractors of the IRS collecting taxes. Employees of these collection agencies must follow the provisions of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and must be courteous and respect taxpayer rights.

The IRS will do everything it can to help taxpayers avoid confusion and understand their rights and tax responsibilities, particularly in light of continual phone scams where callers impersonate IRS agents and request immediate payment.

Private collection agencies will not ask for payment on a prepaid debit card. Taxpayers will be informed about electronic payment options for taxpayers on the IRS website. Payment by check should be payable to the U.S. Treasury and sent directly to IRS, not the private collection agency.

The IRS will continue to keep taxpayers informed about scams and provide tips for protecting themselves. The IRS encourages taxpayers to visit IRS.gov for information including the “Tax Scams and Consumer Alerts” page.

For more information, visit the Private Debt Collection page on IRS.gov.

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7 Comments

  • 42214 October 21, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    Good, I hope this works. Maybe we will stop seeing those obnoxious commercials about IRS settlements for pennies on the dollar.

  • .... October 21, 2016 at 4:35 pm

    This won’t affect me in any way. I don’t pay taxes because I don’t have 2 work 4 a living !

    • ladybugavenger October 21, 2016 at 9:46 pm

      LOL! This won’t affect me I always get refunds….the benefits of low wages (Oh wait! I’m unemployed right now, Yep….still doesn’t affect me. And why dows the english language have effect and affect? Lol

      • ladybugavenger October 21, 2016 at 9:47 pm

        And there’s no inheritance tax for under a couple million….so I’m good there

        • .... October 22, 2016 at 8:38 pm

          Oh well that’s 2 of us not working and not paying taxes. good for us. ..wooooohooooooo free ride for us !!!! …Dumbob and RealLowlife have a responsibility to pay taxes for my way of life ! pay up boys ! LOL

          • .... October 22, 2016 at 8:39 pm

            Praise the Lord !

  • Henry October 21, 2016 at 9:35 pm

    We’ll hold our breath that they’ll now be able to collect the $3-4 million in back taxes owed by “the Reverend” Al Sharpton.

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