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You Didn’t File a Tax Return – CP59

The IRS sends Notice CP59 when a taxpayer does not file his or her tax return. If you were required to file and you did not file your return, you might receive this notice. The IRS also charges a penalty for failure-to-file.

How to Respond

Notice CP59 includes the tax year, the notice date, your social security number, any taxes due, and the IRS contact number. When you receive Notice CP59, you can respond by:

  • Filing your personal tax return immediately, or
  • Explaining to the IRS why you don’t need to file, are filing late, or that you have already filed

If you disagree with the notice or have already filed your return, you can call the toll free number on the top right corner of the notice. Also, you can use the notice’s response form to communicate with the IRS.

If you agree with the notice, you will need to pay the full amount listed on your notice, including any penalties or interest.

If you filed your return before you received the notice, you don’t need to act if it was within the last eight weeks. If it’s been eight weeks or more, you can complete and mail the response form, attaching a copy of your return to it.

What Happens If You Don’t File

If you don’t file your return after receiving CP59, the IRS may proceed with collection action. The IRS can collect back taxes by:

  • Initiating a tax lien
  • Initiating a levy
  • Offsetting your tax refund

As part of its collection process, the IRS can seize property, wages, bank accounts, social security benefits, and retirement income. The IRS will continue to send notices, encouraging you to resolve your tax issue to prevent collection efforts.

Back Taxes Resolution Options

Taxpayers unable to pay their back taxes in a single payment can request an Installment Agreement. Under an Installment Agreement, taxpayers can pay their back taxes in fixed monthly payments over several months or even years.

An Offer in Compromise is a payment plan that allows for a reduction in tax debt. This plan is accessible to taxpayers that are financially incapable of paying the full debt amount.