26 U.S. Code § 7403 - Action to enforce lien or to subject property to payment of tax

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(a) Filing
In any case where there has been a refusal or neglect to pay any tax, or to discharge any liability in respect thereof, whether or not levy has been made, the Attorney General or his delegate, at the request of the Secretary, may direct a civil action to be filed in a district court of the United States to enforce the lien of the United States under this title with respect to such tax or liability or to subject any property, of whatever nature, of the delinquent, or in which he has any right, title, or interest, to the payment of such tax or liability. For purposes of the preceding sentence, any acceleration of payment under section 6166 (g) shall be treated as a neglect to pay tax.
(b) Parties
All persons having liens upon or claiming any interest in the property involved in such action shall be made parties thereto.
(c) Adjudication and decree
The court shall, after the parties have been duly notified of the action, proceed to adjudicate all matters involved therein and finally determine the merits of all claims to and liens upon the property, and, in all cases where a claim or interest of the United States therein is established, may decree a sale of such property, by the proper officer of the court, and a distribution of the proceeds of such sale according to the findings of the court in respect to the interests of the parties and of the United States. If the property is sold to satisfy a first lien held by the United States, the United States may bid at the sale such sum, not exceeding the amount of such lien with expenses of sale, as the Secretary directs.
(d) Receivership
In any such proceeding, at the instance of the United States, the court may appoint a receiver to enforce the lien, or, upon certification by the Secretary during the pendency of such proceedings that it is in the public interest, may appoint a receiver with all the powers of a receiver in equity.


(Aug. 16, 1954, ch. 736, 68A Stat. 874; Pub. L. 89–719, title I, § 107(b),Nov. 2, 1966, 80 Stat. 1140; Pub. L. 94–455, title XIX, § 1906(b)(13)(A), title XX, § 2004(f)(2),Oct. 4, 1976, 90 Stat. 1834, 1872; Pub. L. 97–34, title IV, § 422(e)(8),Aug. 13, 1981, 95 Stat. 316.)

1981—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 97–34struck out “or 6166A(h)” after “section 6166 (g)”.
1976—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 94–455, §§ 1906(b)(13)(A), 2004(f)(2), struck out “or his delegate” after “Secretary” and inserted provisions relating to the acceleration of payment under section 6166 (g) or 6166A (h).
Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 94–455, § 1906(b)(13)(A), struck out “or his delegate” after “Secretary”.
1966—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 89–719inserted sentence permitting the United States, if the property is sold to satisfy a first lien held by the United States, to bid at the sale such sum, not more than the amount of such lien with expenses of sale, as the Secretary or his delegate directs.
Effective Date of 1981 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 97–34applicable to estates of decedents dying after Dec. 31, 1981, see section 422(f)(1) ofPub. L. 97–34, set out as a note under section 6166 of this title.
Effective Date of 1966 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 89–719applicable after Nov. 2, 1966, regardless of when title or lien of United States arose or when lien or interest of another person was acquired, with certain exceptions, see section 114 (a)–(c) of Pub. L. 89–719, set out as a note under section 6323 of this title.

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