Can You Get a Passport If You Owe Taxes?

Published by Travel Visa Pro on Thu Nov 10 2022

When applying for a passport, many people focus on the basics – if they have the proper paperwork, the funds to pay the application fees, and whether they need to expedite the process. If they can check these boxes, they hand over their application and wait for a passport based on the timeline chosen at the time of application. However, the process is not always as smooth as it seems.

Have you ever thought about how your tax payments could get in the way of getting a passport? Can you get a passport if you owe taxes? Let’s find out:


Can You Get a Passport If You Owe Taxes?

In the past, pending tax payments would not interfere with the passport application process. But this changed due to a law establishing a communication and implementation path between the IRS and the State Department. According to the law, the IRS can notify the State Department about people with delinquent tax debts. They do this through a process known as certification, and once the State Department has you on this list, you will not get a passport. Moreover, you cannot renew your current passport once it expires. It gets even more complicated – you may not be able to use your passport even if it has not expired!


Who Qualifies for Certification?

You may be reading this and wondering if your tax debt can land you in a situation where you cannot travel abroad. The truth is that not everyone undergoes certification, and it thus depends on the extent of your tax debt delinquency.

Meeting the following criteria increases your chances of not getting a passport:

  1. You owe $50,000 in taxes, which includes the penalties,
  2. The IRS has issued a levy against you,
  3. The IRS has filed a notice of federal tax lien, and you have had your Collection Due Process hearing, or
  4. The IRS has filed a notice of federal tax lien, and you have missed your Collection Due Process hearing.

In any of these cases, it’s best to work with an accountant who can help you work out a solution.


Do You Owe the IRS?

Most people know that they owe the IRS money, especially once they hit the $50,000 mark. After all, the IRS will notify you of any actions they plan to take against you due to unpaid debts. But if you are unsure how much you owe the IRS, it’s best to contact them, and if you’re due for certification, get your accountant involved. The sooner you reach an agreement, the sooner you can get a passport.


How Can You Get a Passport If You Owe The IRS?

You may think that owing the IRS will spell doom on all your travel plans. But can you get a passport if you owe taxes? Yes! You qualify for a passport if:

  • You have entered an installment agreement with the IRS and have kept your end of the deal,
  • You have settled the debt with the IRS,
  • You have requested a Collection Due Process hearing after the IRS has issued you a levy or lien,
  • You have asked for “Innocent Spouse Relief,” and the IRS has granted your request.

You can then proceed with your application, knowing that you will get your passport within the time stated in the application. If you wish to get your passport soon, you can always count on our expedited passport processing services, where we can get you a passport in just days. You can reach our agents at +1-833-TVP-VISA (887-8472) to get started today!

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