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Navigating PPIA Administration: Tips for Taxpayers

The Ins and Outs of PPIA Administration

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) aims to help taxpayers who are facing financial difficulties by offering various installment agreement options. One such option is the Partial Payment Installment Agreement (PPIA).

This agreement allows taxpayers to pay off their tax debts over time, but with the added benefit of a lower monthly payment than the standard installment agreement. While PPIA can be a great option for those who cannot afford their taxes upfront, there are certain issues with the PPIA administration that need to be addressed.

In this article, we will discuss some of these issues and provide you with information on the usage and comparison of PPIA.

Inadequate Information Provided by IRS

Many taxpayers have reported that they find it difficult to get adequate information on PPIA from the IRS. While the IRS has a public website with some information, it is quite limited.

The instructions on how to request a PPIA are also not very clear. These issues with inadequate information make it difficult for taxpayers to understand the process of applying for this installment agreement.

In addition, when taxpayers try to get further information on PPIA or apply for the agreement, they often have to go through a lengthy process of calling the IRS, waiting on hold for long periods, and being transferred from one representative to another before getting the information they need.

Ineffective Request and Appeal Processes

Another issue with PPIA administration is the ineffective request and appeal processes. When taxpayers make a request for a PPIA, the IRS has the discretion to approve or reject the request.

However, the process for requesting a PPIA can be complicated, and many taxpayers find that their requests are rejected without a clear explanation. Furthermore, the appeal process for rejected PPIA requests can also be confusing.

Taxpayers who want to appeal a rejection have to file an Application for Taxpayer Assistance Order (ATAO). This process can be challenging, especially for taxpayers who are unsure of how to navigate it.

High Default Rates

The default rate for PPIAs is higher than that of other installment agreement options. This is mainly because PPIAs require a lower monthly payment.

Although this may initially seem like a good thing, it means that taxpayers may take longer to pay off their tax debt. As a result, they may lose motivation to keep up with their payments, leading to a higher default rate.

Alternatives to PPIA

While PPIA may be a great option for some taxpayers, it is not the only option available. Other agreements such as Currently Not Collectible (CNC) status and Streamlined Installment Agreements (SIA) also exist.

These options have different requirements and terms of payment, and taxpayers should explore all of them before deciding which installment agreement to request.

Percentage of PPIAs

Despite its issues, PPIA remains a popular installment agreement option. In recent years, the percentage of PPIAs has remained steady.

Around 7% of all installment agreements in 2019 were PPIAs. This number may seem small, but it represents a significant number of taxpayers who benefit from this option.

Comparison to Other Agreement Types

When compared to other installment agreement types, PPIAs have a higher default rate. However, they are generally more affordable than other types of agreements.

Streamlined installment agreements, which require full payment within 72 months and have a maximum debt limit of $50,000, have a lower default rate than PPIAs. They are also easier to request and allow taxpayers to avoid having to provide extensive financial information to the IRS.


While PPIA administration has its fair share of issues, it is still a valuable installment agreement option for taxpayers who cannot afford to pay their taxes all at once. By understanding the issues with PPIA administration and exploring other installment agreement options, taxpayers can make informed decisions about how to best manage their tax debt.

Recommendations for Improving PPIA Process

The IRS has recognized the issues with PPIA administration and has taken steps to improve the process. However, there are still areas that need to be addressed.

In this section, we will discuss some recommendations for improving the PPIA process.

Informing Taxpayers of PPIA Availability

One of the main issues with PPIA administration is that many taxpayers are not aware that this option exists. The IRS should make efforts to inform taxpayers of the availability of PPIAs, especially those who have received collection notices or are in danger of having a Notice of Federal Tax Lien filed against them.

The IRS should also provide more information on PPIAs on their public website. The information provided should be comprehensive, easy to understand, and cover all aspects of the PPIA process.

The website should also provide clear instructions on how to request a PPIA and how to qualify for this option.

Changes to Installment Agreement Request Form

Another recommendation for improving the PPIA process is to make changes to the IRS Form 9465, Installment Agreement Request. The current form is lengthy and requires taxpayers to provide extensive financial information, which can be overwhelming for some taxpayers.

To make the process easier, the IRS should redesign the form to make it simpler and more user-friendly. The form should include clear and concise instructions on what information is required and how it should be filled out.

The IRS could also consider offering an online version of the form, which would make it more accessible to taxpayers.

Suggesting Affordable Payment Amounts

PPIA repayment terms are based on a taxpayer’s ability to pay. However, many taxpayers struggle to determine an affordable payment amount.

To make the process easier, the IRS could suggest an affordable payment amount based on a taxpayer’s financial analysis. The IRS can use the financial information provided by the taxpayer to calculate an affordable payment amount.

This would make the process of determining a payment amount less stressful for taxpayers and could lead to a lower default rate for PPIAs.

Seeking Professional Help for Tax Debt

While PPIAs can be a valuable option for taxpayers, it is often best to seek professional help when dealing with tax debt. Consulting with a tax professional or lawyer can provide several benefits.

Importance of Consulting Tax Professional or Lawyer

One of the main benefits of consulting a tax professional or lawyer is that they can provide guidance on which installment agreement option is best for your specific situation. They can review your financial situation and other factors and recommend an installment agreement that is more likely to be approved.

In addition, tax professionals and lawyers have experience in dealing with the IRS and can help you navigate the installment agreement process. They can help you fill out the necessary forms, provide guidance on the documentation required, and negotiate with the IRS on your behalf.

Final Thoughts

While PPIAs have their issues, they are still a valuable option for taxpayers struggling with tax debt. By following the recommendations for improving the PPIA process and seeking professional help when necessary, taxpayers can more easily navigate the installment agreement process and become tax debt-free.

The article discusses the ins and outs of PPIA administration. It highlights the common issues taxpayers face such as inadequate information, ineffective request and appeal processes, and high default rates.

The article suggests some recommendations for improving the PPIA process, such as informing taxpayers of PPIA availability, making changes to the installment agreement request form, and suggesting affordable payment amounts. Additionally, the article emphasizes the importance of seeking professional help when dealing with tax debt, as tax professionals and lawyers can provide guidance on the best installment agreement option and help navigate the process.

It is important for taxpayers to understand their options and seek help when necessary to manage their tax debt effectively.

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