Expedited Passport Decertification Available to Taxpayers With Urgent Travel Needs

As we've previously reported,1 the IRS is actively targeting some taxpayers for passport denial or revocation. Currently, taxpayers who owe the IRS at least $52,000 may be unable to obtain or renew their passports. Taxpayers must be proactive to prevent delays with travel plans.

On February 27, 2019, the IRS issued a news release2 reiterating that once the IRS notifies the State Department that it has certified a taxpayer as having "seriously delinquent tax debt," the State Department must deny passport application or renewal. Furthermore, the State Department may revoke a targeted taxpayer's currently valid passport.

The news release indicates that for the taxpayer to no longer be considered as having "seriously delinquent tax debt" and ultimately reverse the certification, a taxpayer must do one of the following:

  • Pay the tax debt in full,
  • Pay the tax debt timely per an approved installment agreement,
  • Pay the tax debt timely per an accepted offer in compromise,
  • Pay the tax debt timely per the terms of a settlement agreement with the Department of Justice,
  • Have requested or have a pending collection due process appeal with a levy, or
  • Have collection suspended due to an innocent spouse election or request for innocent spouse relief.

The IRS clarified in the news release that once a taxpayer "no longer has a seriously delinquent tax debt, because they paid it in full or made another payment arrangement, the IRS will reverse the taxpayer's certification within thirty days." However, the IRS also indicates that "the IRS can expedite the decertification notice to the State Department for a taxpayer who resolves their debt, has a pending passport application and has imminent travel plans or lives abroad."

Shortly after this news release, Eli Noff, Partner at Frost & Associates, LLC, and Darren Guillot, Director of IRS Field Collection Operations were co-panelists at the American Bar Association May Tax Meeting, "Current Enforcement Priorities in IRS Collection." As part of their presentation, Mr. Noff and Mr. Guillot engaged in an illuminating Q&A which provided greater detail as to what taxpayers could expect regarding the expedited process.

Specifically, Mr. Guillot clarified that Form 14794, "Expedited Passport Decertification" is available for taxpayers who have an urgent need to travel within 45 days. Under this expedited process, the standard 30-day decertification time is reduced to 24 to 48 hours from the receipt of Form 14794.

It should be abundantly clear that taxpayers must act promptly in these matters. If you have urgent travel plans and you need expedited reversal, or de-certification, of a "seriously delinquent tax debt" certification, contact Frost & Associates, LLC today at 410-497-5947.

1 https://www.districtofcolumbiataxattorney.com/Articles/IRS-Actively-Targeting-Taxpayers-For-Passport-Denial-Revocation.shtml.

2 IR-2019-23.

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