Has a tax lien been placed on your personal or business property? Do what you can to get rid of it as soon as possible if you want to sell those assets smoothly. Your prospective buyers can do an IRS tax lien search before making an offer, and this could be detrimental to the transaction.
What Can Happen
Rarely will buyers or investors agree to buy the property and pay the back taxes (the debt owed plus interest charges and penalty fees) themselves. They will usually be discouraged by the tax lien, however, and consider the investment as no more than a financial burden not worth their money in the long run. You not only will lose that buyer but may even receive no more serious inquiries after that since your back taxes are still pending.
Sometimes, the property or the tax lien certificate can be auctioned by the state. The IRS will set a deadline for that, and if you are unable to pay your dues by then, a buyer or investor can snag your asset at a fraction of its true market price. This is especially disadvantageous if the amount of the sale is lower than your total dues (which also means you have to find other ways to satisfy your entire debt).
What You Can Do
One way to eliminate a tax lien is by getting qualified for an offer in compromise. You will need to work with an experienced IRS tax lawyer to facilitate this option.