IRS v. Snyder: Can the IRS be Prevented from Enforcing a Lien on ERISA Accounts?
Published: 2004 | Author: William J. Tucker

This paper discusses the 2003 case IRS v. Snyder, as well as related case law, which addresses the issue of whether the IRS can be prevented from enforcing a lien on ERISA accounts. 


The central issue in IRS v. Snyder, 343 F.3d 1171 (9th Cir.2003), was whether an IRS claim for delinquent taxes secured outside of bankruptcy by a lien on an ERISA-qualified pension plan is “secured” within the meaning of § 506(a).  At the time the paper was written, courts were divided on this issue.  The 9th Circuit in Snyder held that the IRS’s claim is not “secured” within the meaning of § 506(a) because “a debtor’s interest in an ERISA-qualified plan is excluded from the bankruptcy estate pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 541(c)(2).”  Snyder, 343 F.3d at 1173.

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