My name is Robert Geller and I’m with the law office of Robert M Geller PA. There are two other lawyers with our firm. And today I want to talk to you about how, or whether you can get rid of certain taxes through filing bankruptcy. And the short answer to that question is yes, no, maybe. So, so what am I talking about here? Well, let’s first talk about payroll taxes and trust fund or trust fund taxes.
Generally when you collect a tax from somebody else who pays it, like people pay sales tax or your employees work and they have to pay certain federal withholding tax, which you have to turn it over to the government. Um, and you’re supposed to collect that tax and turn it over to the government. And for whatever reason, you didn’t turn that over to the government. Those taxes are not dischargeable in bankruptcy.
And I don’t think bankruptcy is going to help you generally. So where is the yes. Answer to what is dischargeable in bankruptcy and that lies with certain income tax. So certainly income tax is dischargeable in bankruptcy. Many people are surprised when they come in my office to learn that. And so you asked what types of income taxes, distractable bankruptcy. Well, there are certain criteria to that. Let me kind of give you the general, uh, criteria.
First of all, the tax returns have to be filed at least two years prior to the time the bankruptcy has been filed, the second criteria, and these are just general criteria. There are some others is that the return has to be do more than three years prior to filing bankruptcy. So we are now into, um, September of 2017. If you filed your tax return, um, for 2013, it would have been due in April of 2014.
If you filed a timely and you didn’t get any extensions, then your taxes for 2013 would be dischargeable because the due date was April of 2014. And then the final criteria is you must not be assessed that tax within 240 days of filing bankruptcy so that if the government came in a week before you filed the bankruptcy and said, you owed more tax, that would not be potentially dischargeable in bankruptcy. And let me just add a caveat to that, that there are some other exceptions that make that tax not dischargeable.
It would be a good idea to come in and speak to a qualified bankruptcy attorney about whether those taxes are dischargeable. Some other things that are dischargeable in bankruptcy would be a certain penalties related to the income tax. So that’s something, again, you can discuss with an attorney when you come in the office. Um, if you need more information about bankruptcy, feel free to click on the link. We’ll be glad to provide you that information. I am Robert Geller and I look forward to helping you build a bridge to a brighter future.