IRS tries to collect 4-cents in back taxes at car wash

We all know that times are tough. As a result, the IRS has made collections -- and audits -- a priority in an effort to put more revenue in the Treasury.

How much of a priority? So much so that the IRS sent a couple of agents to Harv's Metro Carwash in Sacramento, California, to collect back taxes ... of 4 cents.

According to the owner, Aaron Zeff, the IRS agents showed up last week demanding payment. When Zeff took a look at the letter, he noted the amount: "I looked at the letter and I couldn't believe what I saw. The number was astonishing. Four cents."

Of course, that was the original amount owed. Over time, together with failure to file penalties and interest, the amount at issue had grown to $202.35. And the IRS wanted to be paid.

According to Zeff's attorney, Ashley West, Zeff knew nothing about the back taxes. West claims that they only learned about the delinquent debt this week.

Zeff claims that he had notice that he owed nothing as of last year. He says, "I have a letter from the IRS just from October of (last) year, stating that my returns have been filed and my tax balance is zero."

Of course, Zeff's experience is far from normal. In the large majority of cases, the IRS doesn't show up on your doorstep. In most cases, if you owe money to the IRS, you'll receive a notice advising you of the amount and your right to appeal. If you ignore the notice, the IRS may take further steps to collect, including placing a lien on your real property or garnishing your wages.

What exactly inspired the IRS to stop by Harv's hasn't been made public. The IRS doesn't comment on private collection matters. But Zeff has his own idea: "The good men and women of the IRS said, 'Let's go down to Harv's car wash and get our car washed.' "

Tax Tips for Employees Who Work at Home

If you're an employee who works at home, you may be eligible for tax deductions that are unavailable to in-office employees.

Read More

Brought to you by TurboTax.com

The Tax Benefits of Your 401(k) Plan

Your contributions to a qualified 401(k) may lower your tax bill and help you build financial security.

Read More

Brought to you by TurboTax.com

What Is IRS Form 5498: IRA Contributions Information?

Form 5498: IRA Contributions Information reports your IRA contributions to the IRS. Your IRA trustee or issuer - not you - is required to file this form with the IRS by May 31.

Read More

Brought to you by TurboTax.com

Taxes and the Federal Poverty Level Guidelines

The federal government defines individuals and families as being in poverty if their household income falls below a certain level. The level varies based on household size and, to a lesser extent, location. Although many government programs base their eligibility requirements on federal poverty guidelines, taxes have a minor link to them.

Read More

Brought to you by TurboTax.com
Read Full Story