Understanding your CP51A Notice
We computed the tax on your Form 1040, 1040A or 1040EZ. You owe taxes.
What you need to do
- Read your notice carefully. It will explain how much you owe and how to pay it.
- Pay the amount due by the date shown in the notice.
- Make payment arrangements if you can't pay the full amount you owe.
- Contact us if you disagree with the amount of tax we computed.
You may want to...
- Download copies of the following materials (if they were not included with your notice):
- Call 1-800-TAX-FORM (1-800-829-3676) to order forms and publications.
- Check to see that you have enough money withheld from your paycheck to pay your taxes. The IRS withholding calculator can help.
- Learn about your payment options.
- Learn about payment plans and installment agreements.
- Learn how to submit an Offer in Compromise.
- Complete and send us a Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative to authorize someone (such as an accountant) to contact us on your behalf.
Answers to Common Questions
What if I can't pay what I owe?
You can make a payment plan.
How can I make a payment plan?
Call us at the toll free number on the top right corner of your notice to talk about payment plans or learn more about them.
What should I do if I disagree with the notice?
Call us at the toll free number on the top right corner of your notice. Please have your paperwork (such as cancelled checks, amended return, etc.) ready when you call.
Am I charged interest on the money I owe?
Not if you pay the full amount you owe by the date on the payment coupon. However, interest will be charged if you pay after that date, even if you get a payment plan.
Will I receive a penalty if I can't pay the full amount?
Yes, you'll receive a late payment penalty. You can call us at the number on your notice if you can't pay the full amount because of financial problems. Contact us by your payment's due date. Based on your situation, we may be able to remove the penalty.
Tips for next year
Consider filing your taxes electronically. Filing online can help you avoid mistakes and find credits and deductions that you may qualify for. In many cases you can file for free. Learn more about e-file.