Private Collection Agencies

The law requires the IRS to use private agencies to collect certain outstanding, inactive tax debts.

If your tax debt has been transferred to a private collection agency, you will be contacted by one of these four private collection agencies on the government's behalf:

CBE
P.O. Box 2217
Waterloo, IA 50704
800-910-5837
ConServe
P.O. Box 307
Fairport, NY 14450
844-853-4875
Performant
P.O. Box 9045
Pleasanton, CA 94566
844-807-9367
Pioneer
PO Box 500
Horseheads, NY 14845
800-448-3531

  How it works

Before you are contacted by a private collection agency, you will receive two letters.

  1. The IRS will first send Notice CP40 and Publication 4518. These let you know that your overdue tax account was assigned to a private collection agency.
  2. The private collection agency then sends their initial contact letter. It has information on how to resolve your overdue taxes.

Both letters contain a Taxpayer Authentication Number. It’s used to confirm your identity. It’s also for you to verify that the caller is legitimate. Keep this number in a safe place.

  What to do

Work with your assigned private collection agency to resolve your overdue taxes.

  What to expect after you receive a Notice

  • You should validate that the caller is representing one of the private collection agencies listed above.
  • The private collection agency will ask you a series of questions to make sure they’re talking to the correct person.
  • You will be asked to exchange portions of the Taxpayer Authentication Number with the private collection agency to validate each other’s identity.
  • The private collection agency will be courteous, professional and respect your taxpayer rights, while following the laws.
  • The private collection agency will work with you to resolve your overdue taxes. They will NOT threaten you. If you feel the private collection agency acted inappropriately, here’s how to report it.

For more information you can also view the IRS video Private Collection of Overdue Taxes.