The Internal Revenue Service is widely known and feared for its zealous pursuit of taxpayers who are suspected of committing tax crimes. However, the reality is that many people who have never broken the law are completely shocked to find that they are being investigated by the IRS. Another disconcerting reality: the IRS can seize your bank account even if no criminal complaint is ever filed against you.
This troubling practice has become more frequent in recent years, as the federal government has increasingly used an asset forfeiture law to go after individual taxpayers and small business owners. The law is meant to be used to seize cash from terrorists, drug traffickers and other criminals, but innocent, everyday Americans have been caught up in the dragnet. Once the IRS seizes your bank account through civil asset forfeiture, the burden is placed on you to get your money back.