U.S. Tax Delinquents: Travel Ban Implemented


Joining the ranks of parents who fail to pay child support and lose their passports, US Citizens with serious tax delinquencies will now risk losing their passports and the inability to renew them. In December of 2015 congress passed the FAST Act that among other things mandated that delinquent taxpayers would lose their passports. After a delay in implementation, the rule became effective on January 1, 2018 . The following are some important aspects of the new program:

  1. The IRS will certify that a taxpayer has a “seriously delinquent” tax debt, defined as an unpaid, legally enforceable and assessed federal tax liability of an individual greater than $50,000.
  2. The IRS will notify the State Department of the delinquent status of the tax payer.
  3. When the delinquent taxpayer applies for a passport, the applicant will be notified of the issue and will be given 90 days to resolve it with the IRS. In addition, the State Department may revoke or limit a passport that was previously issued.
  4. Tax debt is not deemed to be seriously delinquent in some situations such as: if the debt is being paid through an installment agreement, an offer in compromise, a settlement agreement.
  5. If a taxpayer feels that the certification of serious tax delinquency is incorrect, they have a right to judicial review in either US District Court or US Tax Court.

These new rules may come as a rude awakening to some US Citizens living overseas who marry and live abroad for long periods of time and do not stay current with their US tax obligations. These US Citizens may petition for an immigrant visa for their spouse only to be barred themselves from coming to the US.

The USCIS has long used a similar test to bar Green Card holders from becoming naturalized US Citizens if they are delinquent on their taxes. The lesson is pay your taxes or you may land-locked.

This post originally appeared on Wolfsdorf Immigration Law Group. Copyright © 2017 Wolfsdorf Connect - All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with permission.

About The Author

David R. Fullmer joined Wolfsdorf Rosenthal as a partner in 2017. He is a top rated immigration lawyer and the LA County Bar Immigration Section Chair. Mr. Fullmer has practiced exclusively in the area of immigration law for nearly twenty years. His main goal is to provide leading edge immigration legal services. He strives to educate the parties at the nuts and bolts level on their compliance obligations. He also believes that effective communication combined with service and education is to best combination to assist HR Managers who supervise visa processing and immigration at companies. His approach goes a long way in relieving the stress felt by foreign national employees during the complex and often unpredictable process of dealing with the government’s various immigration agencies. Mr. Fullmer has a long history of serving General Counsel and Human Resource professionals in public and private companies, as well as international business executives and entertainers. He represents domestic/international companies and individuals in all business immigration matters, and works to open doors for clients ranging from Fortune 500 corporations to movie stars. His expertise includes the full-range of non-immigrant visas (E-1/E-2, H-1B, H-3, J-1, L-1A, L-1B, O-1, P-1 and TN), immigrant visas (PERM Labor Certifications, Aliens with Extraordinary Ability, Advanced Degrees, Managers &Executives, National Interest Waivers, Professors & Researchers, Skilled Workers, etc.), compliance work (I-9 corporate training and employer self-audits, H-1B public access file training and employer self-audit, representation in Department of Labor Wage and Hour Audits relating to LCA compliance) and global Immigration services (Work visas, business visas and Immigrant visas to virtually any country in the world). The scope of work includes representation of foreign executives, managers, investors, professionals and entertainers for temporary and permanent visas. Having lived and worked in Japan, David R. Fullmer speaks fluent Japanese.

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