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Bryan E. Kuhn
Counselor at Law, P.C.
Business & Employment Law Attorney

Tax liens make financing harder

Debt is part of operating a business. Lines of credit and loans are often necessary to purchase inventory or make other required payments. If debts go unpaid, though, they can hinder the business’s ability to operate. Colorado businesses that fall behind on tax payments to the government may have tax liens entered against them. Tax liens get paid before obligations to other creditors.

Tax liens can make it more difficult to secure financing as creditors know that they’ll be second in line at best when it comes to getting paid back. A tax lien sends a message to lenders that the business or the business owner is unwilling or unable to pay back debts. It won’t have an impact on a person’s credit score, but it will still make it harder to get loans.

The Internal Revenue Service sometimes makes errors in issuing liens on assets. If a tax lien is erroneously entered against a business, the business owner should contact the county recorder, assessor or clerk to verify the amount of the lien. The IRS sends out a notice when a tax lien is entered, and that notice generally contains information about how to correct mistakes.

If the lien is valid, the best course of action is to pay it off as soon as possible. Getting the lien off the books will alleviate investor concerns and make it easier to operate going forward.

Someone who has questions about small business financing might want to consult an attorney. Legal counsel with experience in business law might be able to help by disputing the amount or validity of a tax lien or attempting to negotiate with the IRS. In certain cases, the IRS might be willing to reduce the amount of back taxes due or set up a payment plan that works for the taxpayer.

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