One of the ways the IRS does to settle your debt is by putting a levy on your salary, which is known as wage garnishments. A portion of your income will be taken until all of your debt (including late payment fees and interest charges) is satisfied. Aside from the notices they send to you, the IRS will also send a notice to your employer, so he/she can fill out the required forms, find out how much of your wage will be garnished, and learn how they can send the garnished wages to the IRS.
It won’t always seem fair to you, even if you did have a lapse in paying your dues. The tax code sets a limit on what the IRS can “leave” you with, not the maximum amount of what they can “take.” You may end up with meager income that won’t be enough to pay for rent or mortgage and even other basic living expenses.
IRS wage garnishments can cause economic hardship because of this, and the federal agency has policies or processes that gives you a chance to have the levy released. If your case does get considered by the IRS, however, they won’t write off your total debt. They may give you other payment options, and if you still can’t afford them, you can apply for an offer in compromise. A tax attorney can help you in the process.