Vol. 122, No. 11 A Newspaper of General Circulation March 18, 2019
 
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Tax-payment plans available for small businesses
When a small business owner or a company doesnít have the funds to pay a big tax bill, an installment payment plan with the IRS can be an option.  
Many tax advisers and the IRS itself recommend that any individual or business who canít pay their taxes consider other alternatives Ė borrowing from a bank, family or friends, for example. But owners whose companies donít have lines of credit and who canít dip into personal savings may decide the IRS is the best route.  
Some owners might be inclined not to file their income tax returns if they canít pay, but thatís a big mistake. The governmentís penalty for failure to file can be as much as 25 percent of unpaid taxes, and thatís on top of late payment penalties and interest. And, if an owner or business hasnít filed all their returns, they canít enter a payment plan.  
On its website, www.irs.gov, the agency advises all taxpayers to pay as much as they can. If they want to apply for a payment plan, they should visit www.irs.gov/payments/online-payment-agreement-application, the web page that explains payment plan options and requirements. Among them:  
Ė Businesses (and owners, if theyíre seeking a plan as an individual taxpayer) can apply for short-term plans, which means paying their full bill within 120 days. Otherwise, they can ask for long-term plans. There are fees for long-term plans; the fees can be reduced if payments are made by direct debit.  
Ė A business can apply online if it owes less than $25,000 in tax, penalties and interest combined. Individual owners can apply for a long-term plan online if they owe $50,000 or less in tax, penalties and interest combined. An owner can individually apply online for a short-term plan if the amount owed is less than $100,000. Thereís a link to the application at www.irs.gov/payments/online-payment-agreement-application.  
Ė Owners or businesses that canít apply online must complete IRS Form 9465, Installment Agreement Request. It can be downloaded from the IRS website.  
Ė If owners are severely strapped, they may be able to work out agreements to reduce their indebtedness to the IRS. But, suggests Scott Berger, an accountant with Kaufman Rossin in Boca Raton, Florida, ďsave that for when really need it.Ē  
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