Pay Your Taxes or Lose Your Passport?

Taxes, along with death, are one of the certainties of life, and for most of us, paying our share is a non-issue. By April 15th, we’ve done our duty (or promised to do so via an extension). Not everyone does, though, and now apparently there’s a new penalty for scofflaws: passport revocation.

Pay Your Taxes or Lose Your Passport

Forbes cites recent legislation (see the FAST Act, section 32101) that allows the government to revoke passports if IRS debts are high enough.

“The law says the State Department can revoke, deny or limit passports for anyone the IRS certifies as having a seriously delinquent tax debt in an amount in excess of $50,000. Administrative details are scant. It could mean no new passport and no renewal. It could even mean the State Department will rescind existing passports.” —Forbes, Jan. 4, 2016

As the article points out, details are a little hazy, but it appears that if you are significantly delinquent on federal income taxes and plan on traveling overseas, you might want to get moving on this.


Updated: January 7, 2016