My Son, Potty Training and the IRS

What The?!

Your first question, logically, is what the heck do these three things have in common? Read on…

Just Plain Stubborn

I love my son but he is very very stubborn. He is 3 years old and we are in the process of potty training him. Unfortunately, he is not making it easy.

We’ve tried words of praise and rewards – nothing. Sterner words and maybe letting him feel a bit damp for a spell – he laughs at us puny mortals. Finally, in desperation (and because Mom hates doing tons of laundry), we take him to the bathroom as soon as we see/hear sounds of impending waste disposal.

Slowly, painfully but gradually he is beginning to comply. My goal is to have him housebroken before he goes off to college. So how does this apply to the IRS?

Enter the IRS

Like a parent, the IRS uses a carrot and stick approach to getting compliance from taxpayers who haven’t paid their taxes.

If you file and pay your taxes on time, you get the warm satisfaction of doing your civic duty. For most people they take the easy route to compliance. But some people whether by accident or on purpose (like my son) they cannot pay their taxes on time and so the IRS has to take it up a notch.

The IRS sends out streams of notices notifying you that you have failed to pay your taxes (which get sterner upon each subsequent letter). It will even tack on penalties and interest to let you know that things will only get better once you get with the program.

Failing at that, the IRS begins to take more drastic steps like putting a lien on your property (so when you sell you have to pay the IRS first) or by seizing money in your bank account or garnishing your wages. At this stage, the IRS is not going to wait for you to get with the program, like we are with potty training my son.

In Summary

If you find yourself in trouble – don’t let it get so bad that the IRS has to stand over you (hopefully no where near a toilet). I hope you will not be as stubborn as my son so I have provided a helpful video (a painlessly short one) that explains how to get started with resolving your IRS tax debt. Click the link here.


James “Wish-Me-Luck” Wade, cleaning up IRS messes since 2013.


I am Maine’s IRS Problem Solver. My firm helps Maine taxpayers in trouble. If you or someone you know in Southern Maine wants more information on how to resolve your unpaid taxes, please feel free to contact me directly at 207-502-7181 or by filing out my contact form. A Maine tax attorney can help you consider your options.

James D. Wade, Esq.
Law Office of James D. Wade
57 Portland Road, Unit 3
Kennebunk, ME 04043