What is an Offset? How to Contact the Treasury Offset Program (TOP)

What is an Offset?

An offset is a debt collection method where the federal government intercepts a taxpayer’s federal income tax refund to satisfy an outstanding debt owed to a federal or state agency. This process is administered by the Bureau of Fiscal Services (BFS), a division of the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

How Does the Treasury Offset Program (TOP) Work?

The TOP is a debt collection program that allows state agencies to submit eligible unemployment compensation debts to the BFS for offset against a debtor’s federal income tax refund. Here’s how the process works:

  1. Debt Eligibility: The debt must meet certain criteria, such as being more than 90 days delinquent and legally enforceable.
  2. Notice to Debtor: The debtor receives a Federal Tax Offset Notice informing them of the intent to intercept their tax refund.
  3. Debtor’s Response: The debtor has 60 days to resolve or dispute the debt by paying it in full, providing proof of payment, or submitting bankruptcy information.
  4. Debt Submission to TOP: If the debt remains unresolved after 60 days, it is sent to the TOP database.
  5. Tax Refund Offset: When the debtor receives a federal payment, such as a tax refund, the TOP database is checked for any outstanding debts. If a debt is found, the refund is reduced or withheld to satisfy the debt.

How to Contact the Treasury Offset Program (TOP)

If you have questions or concerns regarding a TOP offset, you can contact the TOP Call Center at 1-800-304-3107. The call center staff can provide information about:

  • The offset process
  • Contact information for the agency that requested the offset
  • How to dispute a debt
  • How to get your share of a refund if it was intercepted for a debt owed by your spouse

Additional Information

  • Types of Federal Payments Subject to Offset: Tax refunds, federal wages, federal retirement benefits, contractor/vendor payments, and certain federal benefit payments.
  • Administrative Fee: The BFS charges an administrative fee for each offset from a federal income tax refund.
  • Repayment Agreements: If you have a repayment agreement with the agency that submitted your debt to the TOP, you should continue making payments on schedule.
  • Dispute Process: If you believe the debt is not past due, not legally enforceable, or not the result of unreported earnings, you can submit a written objection to the referral of your debt for offset.

Remember, the TOP cannot make arrangements for you to pay off your debt, discuss your debt with you, or refund your money. You must contact the specific federal agency or state you owe the money to for assistance.

Offset phone number

What is offset phone number?

Offset Phone Number is +1-404-737-4571- Explore new Offset Phone Number, email address, contact details, agent.

How do I contact offset?

Contact Offset via Offset Contact Information: Phone Number +1-404-737-4571, Email Address [email protected], as well as social media handles. How to Send Fan Mail to Offset? Have you been looking for the fan mail address of Offset? Your search is over! Get the option to send letters to Offset through the verified Fan Mail Address.

How do I find out if a debt is offset?

To determine whether an offset will occur on a debt owed (other than federal tax), contact BFS’s TOP call center at 800-304-3107 ( 800-877-8339 for TTY/TDD help). Can I or my spouse claim part of a refund being applied toward a debt owed by the other spouse?

How do I get a federal tax offset?

Federal nontax debt, like student loans. The IRS makes offsets for past due federal taxes. All other offsets are handled by the Treasury Department’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service (Fiscal Service). For federal tax offsets, you’ll get an IRS notice. For all other offsets, the notice will come from Fiscal Service.

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