How Long Does IRS CNC Last? A Comprehensive Guide to IRS Currently Not Collectible Status

Navigating tax debt can be a daunting task, especially when you’re struggling to make ends meet. If you find yourself in this situation, understanding the IRS Currently Not Collectible (CNC) status can provide much-needed relief. This comprehensive guide will delve into the intricacies of CNC status, its eligibility criteria, application process, and potential advantages and disadvantages.

Understanding IRS Currently Not Collectible Status

IRS CNC status is a temporary hardship status granted to taxpayers who demonstrate an inability to pay their tax debt. When granted CNC status, the IRS halts all collection activities, providing a respite from aggressive collection tactics. This status typically lasts for six months to two years, during which time the 10-year statute of limitations on collections continues to run.

Eligibility Criteria for CNC Status

To qualify for CNC status, you must meet specific eligibility criteria. The IRS will assess your financial situation through a detailed analysis of your income and expenses. You must demonstrate a severe and apparent economic hardship that prevents you from making any meaningful payments towards your tax debt.

Application Process for CNC Status

Applying for CNC status involves submitting a financial statement (Form 433-F or 433-A) to the IRS. This statement should accurately reflect your current financial situation, including income, expenses, and assets. You will also need to provide supporting documentation, such as pay stubs, bank statements, and utility bills.

Advantages and Disadvantages of CNC Status


  • Temporary Relief from Collection Activities: CNC status halts all IRS collection efforts, providing immediate relief from wage garnishments, bank levies, and other enforcement actions.
  • Continued Running of Statute of Limitations: The 10-year statute of limitations on collections continues to run while you’re in CNC status, reducing the time the IRS has to pursue collection.
  • Potential Discharge of Liability: If the statute of limitations expires while you’re in CNC status, your tax debt may be discharged.


  • Temporary Nature: CNC status is only a temporary solution, typically lasting for a maximum of two years. You will need to reapply or explore alternative payment arrangements once your CNC status expires.
  • Potential Loss of Status: The IRS may revoke your CNC status if your financial situation improves or if you fail to provide updated financial information.
  • No Guarantee of Future Relief: Even if you qualify for CNC status, there is no guarantee that you will be granted it again in the future.

IRS CNC status can provide much-needed relief for taxpayers facing severe economic hardship. By understanding the eligibility criteria, application process, and potential advantages and disadvantages, you can make an informed decision about whether CNC status is right for you. If you’re struggling to pay your tax debt, don’t hesitate to contact the IRS or a tax professional to explore your options, including CNC status.

Currently Not Collectible Status Explained | How to Get In CNC Status


How long does CNC last?

How Long Does CNC Status Last? CNC status usually lasts somewhere between six months and two years. The IRS will review the taxpayer’s financial status through tax returns submitted while on CNC status. If the taxpayer’s status improves, the IRS may revoke the CNC status.

What does CNC status mean for IRS?

There are times where you agree you owe the IRS, but you can’t pay due to your current financial situation. If the IRS agrees you can’t both pay your taxes and your basic living expenses, it may place your account in Currently Not Collectible (CNC) status.

Do IRS liens expire after 10 years?

A federal tax lien usually releases automatically 10 years after a tax is assessed if the statutory period for collection has not been extended and the IRS does not extend the effect of the Notice of Federal Tax Lien by refiling it.

How long before IRS debt is written off?

Each tax assessment has a Collection Statute Expiration Date (CSED). Internal Revenue Code (IRC) 6502 provides that the length of the period for collection after assessment of a tax liability is 10 years. The collection statute expiration ends the government’s right to pursue collection of a liability.

Why does the IRS put me in CNC status?

If you are an individual taxpayer (Form 1040 filer), the IRS can put you in CNC status for several reasons: Hardship CNC status. You sent the IRS Form 433A or 433F and supporting documents to prove that your basic living expenses as allowed by the IRS are more than your income. Unable to locate CNC status.

What does CNC status mean if you can’t pay taxes?

If you can’t pay your taxes, the IRS can put you in currently not collectible status ( CNC or Status 53 ). This means that you can’t pay now, but you may be able to pay later. The question for most people with this status is, “When will the IRS ask me to start paying again?” In other words, does CNC status last forever?

What is currently not collectible (CNC)?

“Currently Not Collectible” (CNC) is a status assigned to taxpayers whom the government has deemed unable to pay their outstanding tax liabilities. When an account is designated Currently Not Collectible, it temporarily pauses the IRS collection process—meaning no harassing letters, intimidating phone calls, or threatening levies.

Can the IRS collect money from a CNC account?

While your account is in CNC status, the IRS generally won’t try to collect from you. For example: It won’t levy your assets and income. However, the IRS will still assess interest and penalties to your account and may keep your refunds and apply them to your debt.

Leave a Comment