United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Sep 29, 2022

§ 7432.
Civil damages for failure to release lien
(a)
In general

If any officer or employee of the Internal Revenue Service knowingly, or by reason of negligence, fails to release a lien under section 6325 on property of the taxpayer, such taxpayer may bring a civil action for damages against the United States in a district court of the United States.

(b)
Damages
In any action brought under subsection (a), upon a finding of liability on the part of the defendant, the defendant shall be liable to the plaintiff in an amount equal to the sum of—
(1)
actual, direct economic damages sustained by the plaintiff which, but for the actions of the defendant, would not have been sustained, plus
(2)
the costs of the action.
(c)
Payment authority

Claims pursuant to this section shall be payable out of funds appropriated under section 1304 of title 31, United States Code.

(d)
Limitations
(1)
Requirement that administrative remedies be exhausted

A judgment for damages shall not be awarded under subsection (b) unless the court determines that the plaintiff has exhausted the administrative remedies available to such plaintiff within the Internal Revenue Service.

(2)
Mitigation of damages

(3)
Period for bringing action

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an action to enforce liability created under this section may be brought without regard to the amount in controversy and may be brought only within 2 years after the date the right of action accrues.

(e)
Notice of failure to release lien

The Secretary shall by regulation prescribe reasonable procedures for a taxpayer to notify the Secretary of the failure to release a lien under section 6325 on property of the taxpayer.

(Added Pub. L. 100–647, title VI, § 6240(a), Nov. 10, 1988, 102 Stat. 3746.)
cite as: 26 USC 7432