Business Tax Compliance

We will accomplish our goal of ensuring tax compliance by developing unbiased audit programs for taxes and fees; educating taxpayers on the requirements of the revenue laws; and assisting taxpayers with the payment of their outstanding tax liabilities. This section will assist with your desire to stay compliant with the State of Maryland. In addition, if you are currently receiving notices from the State regarding taxes, we can help get to the bottom of the problem, and get you into compliance.

Why Do I Owe?

Let us help resolve your compliance or collections problem. Learn about reasons why we think you owe us taxes, how we discover the information, what types of notices we send, and what to do about it.

Below you will find links for the most common reasons you may have a Maryland Individual tax liability. You may have received a notice in the mail from us and want more information about it.

If you have questions about the notice you received, or you can't find your notice defined here, call the phone number on the notice promptly. By calling the number on your notice, you can find out how to resolve the dispute or file an appeal and Dispute It! Failure to respond to the notice may cause us to assess additional penalty and interest charges and result in further collections efforts.

You may owe even if your business filed a return. You may have forgotten to make your payment with your return, you may have filed or paid late incurring interest and penalty, or you may have made an error in calculation. There are many reasons why you may owe. If you have any questions, you should contact our Business Tax Collections section at (410) 649-0633 or email to cdcollectionbizz@marylandtaxes.gov.

When a business fails to file tax returns, the business may be contacted by our audit staff to determine if their business has a Maryland filing requirement. When a Maryland business taxpayer is delinquent in filing a return and/or making a payment, our Business Tax Collection section may contact the taxpayer by telephone or U.S. mail to remind the taxpayer to file the missing return or to request payment. Failure to respond may result in additional collection activities.

The Compliance Division receives referrals and complaints from taxpayers and concerned citizens for investigation. When they do, we look into it and determine if any action is necessary and we will send you notification.

In order to report a concern about a business, please contact cdfieldaudit@marylandtaxes.gov.

In order to report a concern about an individual or tax preparer, please contact cdcprograms@marylandtaxes.gov.

Enforcement Actions

If you refuse to make payment arrangements, or you fail to follow through on arrangements that you have made, the Comptroller's Office may file a lien against you, attach your assets, file an estimated assessment for taxes due in the unreported periods, place a hold on driver's or professional licenses or institute other legal processes. For information about each enforcement action, follow the links below.

Slow Down... You Won't Get Your License or Car Registration Renewed If You Don't Pay Up!

The Motor Vehicle Administration, the Maryland Department of Labor and the Comptroller are partnering to make sure that everyone pays their fair share. State law requires that individuals and businesses that have unpaid, undisputed state tax liabilities and/or unpaid unemployment insurance contributions satisfy the debt(s) prior to renewing a Maryland driver's license or vehicle registration. 

If you have unpaid individual income taxes and are not in an approved payment plan, you can request a payment arrangement online, by email at mvahold@marylandtaxes.gov, by calling the Comptroller's Collection Unit toll free at 855-213-6669, or in person at one of the Comptroller's 12 local branch offices. Please include your name, address, the last four digits of your Social Security Number, case number or notice number and your phone number in your e-mail message. This will help us generate a quick response to your inquiry.

If you have unpaid business taxes and are not in an approved payment plan, you can request a payment arrangement by calling Business Tax Collections at  410-649-0633 or emailing cdcollectionbizz@marylandtaxes.gov.

If your business has unpaid unemployment insurance contributions and is not already in an approved payment plan, you can make payment arrangements by contacting the Maryland Department of Labor at 410-368-5440 or via email at uiskip@dllr.state.md.us.

Don't let unpaid taxes slow you down!

For more important information on this new law and how you can pay your debt quickly, check out the links below.

Penalty and Interest Charges

If you do not respond to the first notice, you will receive an assessment notice that will include substantial penalty and interest charges. Under Maryland law, the assessment notice is presumed correct, and you would be required to file and appeal and request a hearing within 30 days of the assessment in order to dispute the amount due. Collection procedures will begin after the expiration of the 30-day period to appeal the assessment.

Your assessment will depend on the amount of taxes that we believe you owe. Maryland law requires us to charge interest at the annual rate of 11 percent during calendar year 2019, and at the annual rate of 10.5% during calendar year 2020. Interest will be calculated from the date the return was originally due. Penalty charges for late payments can be up to 25 percent of the amount of tax you owe.

If you do not settle your account promptly after you receive an assessment notice, legal action will begin that may include filing a property lien or attaching your bank accounts and salary, or referring your account to an outside collection agency.

You can file an appeal and Dispute It! within 30 days of an assessment.

Estimated Assessments

If a business does not file and pay sales and use, withholding, admissions and amusement or corporate income taxes, the Comptroller´┐Żs Office must issue assessments based on whatever information is available.

When an assessment notice is sent, you have 30 days to respond and request a hearing to dispute the liability. If the assessment is not appealed, it becomes final and the estimated liability becomes subject to the collection process.

Liquor License Renewals and Transfers

Renewals

In most jurisdictions, including Baltimore City and the City of Annapolis, the Comptroller may request the Liquor Board to hold the renewal of a state liquor license until the account is current with its filing requirements and/or has made satisfactory payment arrangements. The Comptroller may hold renewals for failure to comply with the sales and use, employee withholding, and admissions and amusement tax requirements.

Transfers

The Liquor Boards of the various jurisdictions report all liquor license transfer request to the Comptroller. The Comptroller will place a hold on the transfer of any license where the seller has not complied with the sales and use, employee withholding, and admissions and amusement tax requirements.

Charter Forfeitures

To inquire about company charters forfeited at the request of the Comptroller for unpaid taxes, contact the Collection Section at (410) 767-1908. This information is not available to the public. You must be a legal representative of the company to receive information.

To make an inquiry, you must have the company's FEIN or Central Registration number. In order to revive a charter that was forfeited at the request of the Comptroller, you must obtain a clearance from the Compliance Division. Call (410) 767-1908 to clear up any outstanding issues and obtain a clearance. It will also be necessary to submit articles of revival with the Department of Assessments and Taxation.

Tax Clearances for License Renewals, and State Contracts and Grants

When a tax clearance has been denied for a license renewal, state contract or grant, contact the Compliance Division for assistance by phone, fax or e-mail at the numbers and addresses listed below.

To obtain a tax clearance for a contract with the state of Maryland, e-mail or fax the request to the Compliance Division's Business Tax Collection Section. Be sure to include the full name of the corporation and the corporation's federal employer identification number.

Once the tax issue has been resolved, the Comptroller's Office will notify the appropriate agency.

Contacts

Individual Income Taxes
Phone: 410-974-2432 or 1-888-674-0016
Fax: 410-974-3053
E-mail: cdcollectionind@marylandtaxes.gov

Business Taxes

Phone: 410-649-0633
Fax: 410-333-7499
E-mail: cdcollectionbizz@marylandtaxes.gov

Liabilities due to various state agencies, including the Comptroller, are matched against state and federal tax refunds, federal vendor payments and state vendor payments.

When a liability is matched to a payment, a letter is mailed to the taxpayer or vendor listing the billing agency, the invoice date, and amount. This letter also identifies the type of tax or liability due and the appropriate state agency telephone number needed to resolve the issue. If the liability is not satisfied, the intercepted funds will be applied to your account and the taxpayer or vendor will receive notification of same.

If the liability is not satisfied, the intercepted funds will be applied directly to that liability and the taxpayer or vendor will receive notification of same

The state and local agencies listed below must verify that an applicant renewing a license has paid all states taxes due - or made a satisfactory payment arrangement - before the license can be renewed:

  • Comptroller of Maryland
  • Clerks of the Circuit Court
  • Maryland Department of Labor
  • Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
  • Motor Vehicles Administration
  • Department of Natural Resources
  • Department of the Environment

If you hold a license issued by one of these agencies, you should file any necessary tax returns and pay all taxes due without delay. If you wait until license renewal time to resolve a tax liability, your renewal may be delayed

Once the tax issue has been resolved, the Comptroller's Office will notify the appropriate agency.

You may contact us for additional information.

Individual Income Taxes
Phone: 410-974-2432 or 1-888-674-0016
Fax: 410-974-3053
E-mail: cdcollectionind@marylandtaxes.gov

Business Taxes
Phone: 410-649-0633
Fax: 410-333-7499
E-mail: cdcollectionbizz@marylandtaxes.gov

Business and Professional License Hold

The state and local agencies listed below must verify that an applicant renewing a license has paid all states taxes due - or made a satisfactory payment arrangement - before the license can be renewed:

  • Comptroller of Maryland
  • Clerks of the Circuit Court
  • Maryland Department of Labor
  • Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
  • Motor Vehicles Administration
  • Department of Natural Resources
  • Department of the Environment

If you hold a license issued by one of these agencies, you should file any necessary tax returns and pay all taxes due without delay. If you wait until license renewal time to resolve a tax liability, your renewal may be delayed

Once the tax issue has been resolved, the Comptroller's Office will notify the appropriate agency.

You may contact us for additional information.

Individual Income Taxes
Phone: 410-974-2432 or 1-888-674-0016
Fax: 410-974-3053
E-mail: cdcollectionind@marylandtaxes.gov

Business Taxes
Phone: 410-649-0633
Fax: 410-333-7499
E-mail: cdcollectionbizz@marylandtaxes.gov

Attach Your Assets

The Comptroller of Maryland regularly requests the seizure of bank accounts and also has the ability to seize liquor licenses, cash on the premises, equipment, vehicles, inventory and real property.

Any money the state owes you for goods or services, or as a personal or corporation income tax refund will either be applied to unpaid tax balances or held pending the filing of missing returns.

External Collection Agency Referral

We may assign your case to one or more of the following collection agencies. Additional fees may apply. Once your case has been assigned, arrangements for payment must be made through that agency.

Penn Credit
916 South 14th Street
Post Office Box 988
Harrisburg, PA 17108
1-800-900-1362
Harris and Harris, LTD
Arnold Scott Harris, P.C.
Attorneys At Law
111 West Jackson Blvd., Suite 600
Chicago, IL 60604-4134
1-855-223-1731

File a Tax Lien

A notice of tax lien may be filed with the clerk of the circuit court where your business or residence is located. The lien has the same force and effect as a court issued judgment lien. A lien may affect your ability to maintain existing credit, secure new credit, or obtain a security clearance. The recorded lien serves as notice that the state may have a claim against your assets.

If you pay your tax lien, a certified copy of your release of lien must be submitted to the credit reporting agencies to have your credit report promptly updated to reflect your lien release. You may obtain a certified copy of your release from the circuit court where your tax lien was filed. The Comptroller does report lien releases to the credit agencies but if you need expedited service, it is your responsibility to obtain the required certified copy and contact the credit agency to update your credit report. 

Caught in the Web

The Comptroller of Maryland is serious about retrieving unresolved tax liabilities. As a part of the collection process, we publish the names of businesses, individuals and corporate officers having large unresolved liabilities - including individuals who have large unresolved personal income tax liabilities. All of the information is public since liens and judgments have been recorded in the judgment dockets of one or more circuit courts of Maryland.

No one is above the tax laws. If you don't want to see your name posted on our site along with other tax delinquents, be sure to keep up with your tax obligations. 

If your name appears in the listing, you should contact the Comptroller's Office to make arrangements to resolve the liability. For business tax liabilities call 410-767-1601. For individual tax liabilities call 410-260-7482, 260-7623 or 1-800-MD-TAXES or e-mail sut@marylandtaxes.gov for either tax.

This is an ongoing program to assure that everyone pays his or her fair share of taxes. Names will be added periodically. If you have not already done so, resolve any deficiencies prior to being selected for the list.

 

2018 Tax Evasion: Top 20 Individuals and Top 25 Business Tax Evaders

Other Collections Actions

If you refuse to make payment arrangements, or you fail to follow through on arrangements that you have made, the Comptroller's Office may file a lien against you, attach your assets, file an estimated assessment for taxes due in the unreported periods, place a hold on driver?s or professional license or institute other legal processes.  For information about each enforcement action, follow the links below.

Collection Action

Annotated Code of Maryland - Tax-General Article

Penalty and Interest

  • Business Collections
  • Individual Collections

13-701

13-409

13-601

13-601

13-509

Rates 13-604

Liability Offset Program

 

Salary Lien

13-811

Property Lien/Lien in Judgment

13-805, 13-806, 13-807, 13-808, 13-809

External Collection Agency Referral

 

Attach Your Assets

13-812

Business & Professional License Hold

 

Motor Vehicle License and Registration Non-renewal

 

Caught in the Web!

 

If you refuse to make payment arrangements, or you fail to follow through on arrangements that you have made, the Comptroller's Office may file a lien against you, attach your assets, file an estimated assessment for taxes due in the unreported periods, issue a summons for a sales and use tax license revocation hearing or institute other legal processes. For information about each enforcement action, follow the links below.

If you are the president, vice president, treasurer or any other officer who owns 20 percent of a corporation, you may be personally liable for unpaid sales and use taxes, penalties and interest owed by the corporation. Any officer of the corporation who exercises direct control over its fiscal management is personally liable for withholding and admissions and amusements taxes, penalties and interest.

Payment of your business taxes may not be avoided through bankruptcy proceedings because sales and use tax and withholding tax are not discharged in bankruptcy. If a bankrupt business does not have enough assets to pay the state taxes, the owners and specified corporate officers are personally responsible for payment.

Pay It!

Below you will find links for methods to pay your Maryland tax liability. If you are unable to pay the full amount due, you should still file a return and consider making payment arrangements. We will process your return and then send you an income tax notice for the remaining balance due for nonpayment of taxes.

Business Tax Payments

Every corporation that reasonably expects its Maryland taxable income to develop a tax in excess of $1,000 for the tax year or period must make estimated income tax payments.

Estimated Corporation Tax Payment

Maryland businesses have a number of payment options when attempting to satisfy a tax liability with the Comptroller's Office. This section details the various methods of credit card and electronic payments, as well as the procedure for handling missed or late payments.

Below you will find links for methods to pay your Maryland tax liability. If you are unable to pay the full amount due, you should still file a return and consider making payment arrangements. We will process your return and then send you an income tax notice for the remaining balance due for nonpayment of taxes. See the Tax Compliance section for details regarding collections, payment arrangements, income tax notices, non-payment and missed or late payments.

You don't have to write another check to pay your taxes, if you don't want to. With the State of Maryland direct debit program you don't have to worry about late penalties and interest charges or mailing off a check for your tax payment.

When you sign the direct debit authorization document you agree to have a predetermined amount deducted from your checking account on approximately the same day each month. If making smaller, more frequent payments is convenient for you, direct debit payments can be arranged to occur on the 1st, 10th and 21st day of each month or any combination of these days.

The debits stop automatically after all taxes, penalties and interest have been paid. The money will be transferred to the State of Maryland with no additional service charge. We can even arrange for separate debits for each type of eligible tax. Direct Debit can be used to pay sales and use, admissions and amusement, and withholding taxes as well as the tire-recycling fee.

You will receive a regular statement of account that shows the direct debit payment along with any other account activity for each tax for which you are making debit payments.

Online Bill Pay is an easy, convenient and secure way to pay your Maryland tax liabilities online for free. This system may be used to make bill payments on business taxes using electronic funds withdrawal (direct debit) from a U.S. bank or financial institution. Foreign facilities will not be accepted. You must become a registered user to access this free online service. To register, click on the appropriate link listed below and follow the instructions.

Bill Pay for Businesses

Businesses can also pay their tax liabilities for the following tax types: Maryland Sales and Use, Withholding, Pass-Through Entity, Corporation, S Corporation, Limited Liability Company, Fiduciary, Tire Recycling Fee and the Bay Restoration Fee.

Individuals can pay their Maryland taxes with a credit card. This service applies to taxes owed for the current year or any back year (if you have a bill). If you file your return electronically by April 15, you have until April 30 to make the credit card payment. You can make your individual tax payment online or by telephone through one of the providers listed below.

Electronic Filers

Electronic filers do not need to submit Form PV if you choose to pay by credit card. See more information on electronic filing and paper forms that may need to accompany it.

Estimated Taxes

If you choose to pay your estimated quarterly income taxes with a credit card, either online or by telephone, then you do not need to file Form PV.

General Payment Information



All companies collect a non-refundable, convenience fee for processing the credit card payment; this fee does not go to the state of Maryland.

Do not include the amount of the convenience fee as part of the tax payment.

ONLINE PAYMENTS
Vendor Name Convenience Fee Tax Types Supported Credit Cards Accepted
NICUSA, Inc. 2.49% All Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express
PAYMENTS BY TELEPHONE - TOLL FREE 1-800-2PAY-TAX (1-800-272-9829)
Vendor Name Convenience Fee Tax Types Supported Credit Cards Accepted
Official Payments 2.49% All Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express
You may also be asked to provide the following information:
  • 13-digit notice number from your tax bill
  • Social Security number or Federal EIC
  • Address with Zip Code
  • Email Address
  • Phone number
  • If you are calling Official Payments to pay by credit card, please use Jurisdiction Code 3000
After your payment is authorized, you will be given a confirmation number that you should keep for your records.

Tip 15 - Direct Debit, Business Taxes and You

Tip 60 - Paying Maryland taxes with a credit card

Payment Arrangements

Businesses that have incurred charges for overdue taxes, interest and penalties should pay the outstanding balance immediately. However, if your business is unable to pay immediately, you should contact a representative of the Collections section to discuss possible payment plan arrangements.

Typically, the Comptroller's Office will not file a lien if a short-term payment plan (not to exceed six months) is reached. A supervisor in the Collections section must review payment plan agreements exceeding six months.

Payment plan agreements in no way affect the filing requirements of future business tax returns.

Any disbursements due a business from the state of Maryland will be applied to any liability owed the Comptroller's Office. This action is taken under the State Finance and Procurement Article, Section 7-222, Annotated Code of Maryland, and in no way affects the payment plan schedule.

To request a payment plan, please contact Business Collections at 410-767-1655 or 1-888-614-6337.

Don't agree with our assessment or adjustments? Dispute it with an appeal.

The Comptroller's authority is granted through §§13-508 and 13-904 of the Tax-General Article, Title 17 of the Commercial Law Article and COMAR 03.01.01.04, .03.01.01.05, and 03.05.02.03. For additional information see Business Tax Tip 34 - Comptroller's Office Hearing Procedures.

  • admissions and amusement tax
  • alcoholic beverage tax
  • bay restoration fee
  • boxing and wrestling tax
  • employer withholding tax
  • income tax
  • motor fuel tax
  • motor carrier tax
  • sales and use tax
  • tire recycling fee
  • tobacco tax
  • unclaimed property

You have the right to file an appeal if you are assessed tax or a fee or if your refund is denied. If you have received a notice and would like to file an appeal, follow the instructions in the notice. Appeals must be in writing.  For additional information see Your Rights Regarding Appeal.

Request an Appeal Online at the Maryland Online Hearing Appeal Request system.

Request an Appeal by Mail by sending it to: 

          Comptroller of Maryland
          Hearings and Appeals Office
          301 West Preston Street, Room 315
          Baltimore, Maryland 21201-2383

Request an Appeal by E-mail by sending it to cdhearings@marylandtaxes.gov.

Informal Hearing

If a taxpayer files a timely appeal, the first step in the appeal process is an informal hearing. An informal hearing is a structured meeting between you and a hearing officer who is designated by the Comptroller to review any issues in dispute. After you file your written appeal, you will receive a Notice of Hearing that advises of the date and time of the hearing. If you believe that the circumstances of your case are straight-forward or based on a lack of documentation, including any missing information with your appeal may help to resolve your dispute without the need to appear in person for a hearing.

You must bring photo identification to the hearing. You may bring your attorney, accountant, bookkeeper, or anyone else who has knowledge of your case and can assist you in your presentation. If you elect to have someone appear for you at the informal hearing, that representative may be required to submit a power-of-attorney granting him or her authority to represent you in the proceeding. You may also bring witnesses you feel are necessary to your case, and you may request the hearing officer to subpoena other witnesses. The subpoena request must be in writing, received at least ten days before the hearing, and include an explanation of why the subpoena is necessary. Subpoenas are sent via first class mail unless you make other arrangements.

Depending on the type of hearing, the Comptroller may have other representatives in attendance at your hearing. For example, if the case is based on an examination of your books and other records, the auditor who examined them and/or the auditor's supervisor, is expected to attend. For cases arising from collection activity, a representative from the collection section will usually attend.

At the informal hearing, you may present any position you have regarding your case, and the hearing officer will consider any relevant information you present in support of your position. Assessments and refund denials are presumed to be correct, and you have the burden of proving otherwise. Therefore, you should be fully prepared to address all of the issues you intend to raise and have with you all of the records and documents that support your positions. Copies are usually acceptable, and anything you submit will be returned to you if you ask for it after the case is concluded.

The hearing officer may question you and your witnesses as well as the auditor to clarify any issues you may raise. The hearings are recorded, and witnesses may be placed under oath.

In the absence of a settlement, the hearing officer will issue a written Notice of Final Determination that explains the basis for the decision. If you disagree with the hearing officer?s determination, you must file an appeal with the Maryland Tax Court within 30 days of the date of the Notice of Final Determination.

Postponements

If you have good cause, you may request to postpone the date of your hearing by submitting a written request at least five business days before the scheduled hearing date. You may be required to document any scheduling conflicts. Under Maryland law, failure to appear at an informal hearing is considered to be a withdrawal of your appeal, and the result is that the assessment or refund denial becomes final and nonappealable.

Online Hearings and Appeals Request

Vendors must have a sales and use tax license to make taxable sales. Most vendors need the license to stay in business. If you have an outstanding business tax liability or are delinquent in filing and paying returns you may be required to show cause as to why your sales and use tax license should not be revoked. If you fail to appear for the hearing or fail to make arrangements to clear up back taxes, the license will be revoked.