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Business Tax Relief Services – Fortress Tax Relief

Small business tax resolution services

We resolve all types of small business taxes; both state & federal

When a business falls behind with IRS or state taxes, it is a very serious problem and must be treated as such.  If not dealt with quickly and appropriately, the taxing authorities can, and often will, issue the most powerful collection weapons they have at their disposal, including:

Business Bank Account Levies

Funds in any business bank account that the taxing authorities can locate can be frozen, held (typically for 21 days), and turned over to the taxing authorities.  The taxing authorities usually know when a business does payroll and know that the company’s bank balance is typically the highest right before payroll.  It is common for them to levy those funds right before payroll.  This causes employees’ paychecks to bounce and wreaks total havoc on the finances of a business.

Accounts Receivable Levies

The taxing authorities have their ways of finding out who the customers of a tax indebted business are.  An A/R levy is when the taxing authorities issue a legal order to the customer(s) of a tax indebted business requiring the customer to send any moneys that are due to the tax indebted business directly to the taxing authority (IRS or State) instead.  The damages caused by this type of enforcement are twofold.  First, the tax indebted business—often already struggling financially—has its cash flow cut off, sometimes completely.  Second, the tax indebted business’s customers learn that the small business has unpaid taxes.  Rather than continue doing business with a company that is behind with taxes, these customers often take their business elsewhere. 

Seizure of the Business’s Assets or Padlocking the Business’s Doors

In most cases, the taxing authorities can “force” companies out of business by repeatedly levying the company’s bank account and/or accounts receivable.  However, if the company continues to operate and the taxing authorities want them closed, they can seize the assets of the business or padlock the business’s premises.

Pursue Collections from the Responsible Individual(s)

The taxing authorities may, depending on the type of tax owed, pursue collections for some or all of the business’s unpaid taxes from the responsible individual(s) of an LLC, S Corporation, C Corporation or other form of business entity.  While a “responsible individual” typically means an officer, shareholder or managing member, this is not always the case.  In some cases, the taxing authorities pursue collections from individuals who are neither owners nor officers.  Involving a knowledgeable and skillful tax relief attorney early in the process can significantly reduce the chances of this happening.

While Fortress Tax Relief resolves both business and individual tax liabilities, the bulk of our practice has always been representing businesses.  This is important because business taxes tend to be more difficult to resolve than individual taxes, and the stakes are higher.  A tax pro with experience representing primarily individuals is ill-prepared to tackle a business tax liability.  Conversely, a tax pro with experience representing businesses can handle an individual tax liability with relative ease. 


Every tax indebted small business has a unique set of circumstances and unique needs.  Fortress Tax Relief does not believe in one-size-fits-all solutions for small businesses, and we will work with–and listen to–small business owners to custom tailor a solution that best fits the business owner’s objectives, values, and needs. With extensive experience resolving complex and extraordinarily difficult business tax liabilities, our team of attorneys truly is the premier small business tax relief provider in the United States. Depending upon the circumstances, we may be able to:

Settle the Business Tax Debt for a Small Fraction of the Full Amount

Some businesses qualify for a tax settlement, also known as an Offer in Compromise (“OIC”).  The IRS Fresh Start Initiative made it much easier for more businesses to qualify for an OIC, and some business tax debts can be settled for “pennies on the dollar.”  Our attorneys are highly skilled negotiators with a ton of experience settling small business tax liabilities.  The result is a very high approval rate and the lowest possible settlement amounts allowed by law.

Penalty Abatements

Some businesses qualify to have some or all of their penalties and associated interest eliminated (abated).  Our attorneys build the strongest case possible for abatement of penalties given the circumstances, and they prepare what are essentially informal and compelling legal briefs requesting abatement on behalf of our small business clients.  Compared to the often poorly written and poorly argued penalty abatement requests prepared by the CPAs and enrolled agents employed by our competitors, we blow the competition away.  The result is that our clients have the highest chance possible of getting the maximum amount of penalties eliminated.

Tax Lien Prevention or Removal

It may be possible to prevent the filing of a tax lien (a public record and a claim to the property of the business).  If a tax lien has already been filed, it may be possible to get it released or withdrawn.

Set Up an Installment Agreement with Affordable Terms

With unpaid business taxes, it can be very difficult to secure an Installment Agreement with monthly payments that are affordable to the business.  The taxing authorities often “bully” business owners and managers into agreeing to monthly payments that the business truly cannot sustain.  It is very important to avoid agreeing to payments that are too high, as the installment agreement will likely default, the business may subsequently be deemed a “repeat offender,” and default is often followed by aggressive enforced collections.  Our attorneys negotiate and fight to get installment agreements done right the first time, and often prove to be an invaluable asset for small businesses who have already defaulted one or more time.

Negotiate Currently Not Collectible Status

Some small businesses are eligible to enter into Currently Not Collectible Status (“CNC”) with the IRS and many states.  Small businesses in CNC can operate free from enforced collections while paying nothing towards their back-tax liability.  Our attorneys are skillful negotiators and will succeed in getting our small business clients into CNC if eligible.

Assist Businesses in Implementing Better Tax Practices

Businesses fall behind with taxes for a variety of reasons.  The underlying cause for this is not always obvious to the business owner or manager.  Fortress Tax Relief endeavors to get its clients out of tax trouble for good, and we will help our clients implement better tax practices when needed.  This can significantly reduce the risk of a business falling behind with taxes again.

Protect and Defend Individuals from Personal Liability

If a business entity (e.g. corporation, LLC, limited partnership, etc.) is unable to resolve its unpaid tax liability fairly quickly, the taxing authorities may, depending upon the type of tax due, pursue collections from the responsible individual or individuals.  Fortress Tax Relief offers an array of services that can prevent or postpone personal assessment, appeal and reverse a proposed personal assessment, provide a solution that allows the business to repay the tax debt while collections from the responsible individual(s) are suspended, or resolve a personally assessed business tax liability with favorable terms (e.g. settlement). 

Prevent Enforced Collections such as Bank Levies and A/R Levies

One of the very first things our attorneys do after accepting a new small business client is to assess the risk of enforcement.  If there is a risk of imminent enforcement, we will take action to minimize or eliminate that risk.  Thus, the name “Fortress.”  There are a variety of methods that can be employed to prevent enforcement, and our attorneys will utilize the method or methods that will be most effective given the circumstances.  With very few exceptions, the small business clients who hire us before late-stage collections and who follow our instructions, will not ever experience a levied bank account, levied receivables or seized assets.

Release or Reverse Levies and Garnishments

If your business bank account or accounts receivables have been levied or garnished (or you have been threatened), call us immediately.  There is a limited amount of time to appeal and reverse a levy, and the sooner our attorneys get to work on it, the better the chances of getting the levy released.  Although it may not be possible to get a levy released in aggravated cases, our attorneys very often succeed in getting levies released.  In situations where we cannot get a levy released, we can almost always negotiate terms that prevent further enforcement provided that our instructions are followed.  This can literally make or break a small business.

Restructure Small Businesses for Tax Advantages

In some cases, small businesses can be restructured such that the amount of money that must be repaid to the IRS or state is significantly reduced or even eliminated completely.  Such restructuring is definitely not for the do-it-yourselfers, and our attorneys guide our clients in need of this service through the process and ensure that the process is executed 100% legally.

“Buy Time” Free of Enforcement

Small businesses must be in compliance with the tax laws to be eligible for a tax relief agreement (Installment Agreement, OIC, Currently Not Collectible Status).  However, not all businesses are able to quickly get into compliance.  Our attorneys employ a variety of methods and tactics to buy time free from enforcement while our small business clients become eligible for a tax relief agreement.

Appeal and Reverse Adverse Taxing Authority Decisions

Although it may at times seem otherwise, the IRS and states do not get to do whatever they please.  There are laws and procedures they must follow.  Moreover, small business taxpayers have rights.  Our attorneys vigorously defend the rights of our small business clients and make sure that the taxing authorities are playing by the rules.  If our clients’ rights are being trampled or if the taxing authorities are abusing their power to the detriment of our clients, we are not afraid to file appeals when necessary.  Our appeals are far more professional and lawyerly than those of the competition, and we very often win.

If your business owes taxes, don’t wait to pick up the phone.  Waiting can cause valuable appeal rights to lapse, and often will make the problem more difficult and expensive to fix.  We’ll be happy to evaluate your situation and tell you if and how we can help. The call is free, and the chances are good that you will learn something valuable even if you choose not to retain us.

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Brett Shelton
Brett Shelton
Brett Shelton Roofing, Santa Cruz, CA
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"Some tax relief companies are just out to get your money. That is absolutely not the case with Fortress. Not only is the Fortress staff excellent at resolving back taxes, they are very personable and they truly care about their clients."
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