Taxpayers who are traveling back to the U.S. with unpaid taxes can be detained at the border and even flagged for follow-up investigation.

If a U.S. taxpayer who is living abroad has an existing, unpaid tax liability and is subject to a resulting notice of a federal tax lien, the IRS submits their information to the Department of Homeland Security, which allows them to easily identify those at the border who owe taxes.

Many of these taxpayers are unaware that they are in tax trouble because the IRS often has difficulty tracking them down until they come through U.S. Customs. But once detained by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, they’re questioned on what assets they have in the U.S., the purpose of their trip and where they are staying. The agents may also inquire about a taxpayer’s employment history in the U.S. or any personal services performed to establish wage garnishment opportunities.

This information is then transferred to an IRS coordinator, and often times an investigation request is sent to an IRS agent residing in the region in which the taxpayer is traveling in order to follow up on the person.

If the taxpayer is subject to a filed Notice of Federal Tax Lien, they will be entered into TECS, or the Treasury Enforcement Communications Systems. Only a withdrawal or release of the lien, along with certain prerequisites, can allow them to have their information removed from TECS.

If you live abroad and suspect that you owe back taxes, or you find yourself with a federal tax lien and need assistance, don’t delay. Call 877-829-3535 and let the professionals at US Tax Shield help you successfully settle your back tax issues.