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Internal Revenue Code, § 6311. Payment Of Tax By Commercially Acceptable Means

I.R.C. § 6311(a) Authority To Receive
It shall be lawful for the Secretary to receive for internal revenue taxes (or in payment for internal revenue stamps) any commercially acceptable means that the Secretary deems appropriate to the extent and under the conditions provided in regulations prescribed by the Secretary.
I.R.C. § 6311(b) Ultimate Liability
If a check, money order, or other method of payment, including payment by credit card, debit card, or charge card so received is not duly paid, or is paid and subsequently charged back to the Secretary, the person by whom such check, or money order, or other method of payment has been tendered shall remain liable for the payment of the tax or for the stamps, and for all legal penalties and additions, to the same extent as if such check, money order, or other method of payment had not been tendered.
I.R.C. § 6311(c) Liability Of Banks And Others
If any certified, treasurer's, or cashier's check (or other guaranteed draft), or any money order, or any other means of payment that has been guaranteed by a financial institution (such as a credit card, debit card, or charge card transaction which has been guaranteed expressly by a financial institution) so received is not duly paid, the United States shall, in addition to its right to exact payment from the party originally indebted therefor, have a lien for—
I.R.C. § 6311(c)(1)
the amount of such check (or draft) upon all assets of the financial institution on which drawn,
I.R.C. § 6311(c)(2)
the amount of such money order upon all the assets of the issuer thereof, or
I.R.C. § 6311(c)(3)
the guaranteed amount of any other transaction upon all the assets of the institution making such guarantee,
and such amount shall be paid out of such assets in preference to any other claims whatsoever against such financial institution, issuer, or guaranteeing institution, except the necessary costs and expenses of administration and the reimbursement of the United States for the amount expended in the redemption of the circulating notes of such financial institution.
I.R.C. § 6311(d) Payment By Other Means
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(1) Authority To Prescribe Regulations
The Secretary shall prescribe such regulations as the Secretary deems necessary to receive payment by commercially acceptable means, including regulations that—
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(1)(A)
specify which methods of payment by commercially acceptable means will be acceptable,
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(1)(B)
specify when payment by such means will be considered received,
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(1)(C)
identify types of nontax matters related to payment by such means that are to be resolved by persons ultimately liable for payment and financial intermediaries, without the involvement of the Secretary, and
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(1)(D)
ensure that tax matters will be resolved by the Secretary, without the involvement of financial intermediaries.
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(2) Authority To Enter Into Contracts
Notwithstanding section 3718(f) of title 31, United States Code, the Secretary is authorized to enter into contracts to obtain services related to receiving payment by other means where cost beneficial to the Government. The Secretary may not pay any fee or provide any other consideration under any such contract for the use of credit, debit, or charge cards for the payment of taxes imposed by subtitle A. The preceding sentence shall not apply to the extent that the Secretary ensures that any such fee or other consideration is fully recouped by the Secretary in the form of fees paid to the Secretary by persons paying taxes imposed under subtitle A with credit, debit, or charge cards pursuant to such contract. Notwithstanding the preceding sentence, the Secretary shall seek to minimize the amount of any fee or other consideration that the Secretary pays under any such contract.
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(3) Special Provisions For Use Of Credit Cards
If use of credit cards is accepted as a method of payment of taxes pursuant to subsection (a)—
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(3)(A)
a payment of Internal Revenue taxes (or a payment for internal revenue stamps) by a person by use of a credit card shall not be subject to section 161 of the Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. 1666), or to any similar provisions of State law, if the error alleged by the person is an error relating to the underlying tax liability, rather than an error relating to the credit card account such as a computational error or numerical transposition in the credit card transaction or an issue as to whether the person authorized payment by use of the credit card,
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(3)(B)
a payment of internal revenue taxes (or a payment for internal revenue stamps) shall not be subject to section 170 of the Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. 1666i), or to any similar provisions of State law,
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(3)(C)
a payment of internal revenue taxes (or a payment for internal revenue stamps) by a person by use of a debit card shall not be subject to section 908 of the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (15 U.S.C. 1693f), or to any similar provisions of State law, if the error alleged by the person is an error relating to the underlying tax liability, rather than an error relating to the debit card account such as a computational error or numerical transposition in the debit card transaction or an issue as to whether the person authorized payment by use of the debit card,
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(3)(D)
the term “creditor” under section 103(g) of the Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. 1602(g)) shall not include the Secretary with respect to credit card transactions in payment of internal revenue taxes (or payment for internal revenue stamps), and
I.R.C. § 6311(d)(3)(E)
notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, in the case of payment made by credit card or debit card transaction of an amount owed to a person as the result of the correction of an error under section 161 of the Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. 1666) or section 908 of the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (15 U.S.C. 1693f), the Secretary is authorized to provide such amount to such person as a credit to that person's credit card or debit card account through the applicable credit card or debit card system.
I.R.C. § 6311(e) Confidentiality Of Information
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(1) In General
Except as otherwise authorized by this subsection, no person may use or disclose any information relating to credit or debit card transactions obtained pursuant to section 6103(k)(9) other than for purposes directly related to the processing of such transactions, or the billing or collection of amounts charged or debited pursuant thereto.
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2) Exceptions
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2)(A)
Debit or credit card issuers or others acting on behalf of such issuers may also use and disclose such information for purposes directly related to servicing an issuer's accounts.
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2)(B)
Debit or credit card issuers or others directly involved in the processing of credit or debit card transactions or the billing or collection of amounts charged or debited thereto may also use and disclose such information for purposes directly related to—
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2)(B)(i)
statistical risk and profitability assessment;
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2)(B)(ii)
transferring receivables, accounts, or interest therein;
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2)(B)(iii)
auditing the account information;
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2)(B)(iv)
complying with Federal, State, or local law; and
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(2)(B)(v)
properly authorized civil, criminal, or regulatory investigation by Federal, State, or local authorities.
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(3) Procedures
Use and disclosure of information under this paragraph shall be made only to the extent authorized by written procedures promulgated by the Secretary.
I.R.C. § 6311(e)(4) Cross Reference
For provision providing for civil damages for violation of paragraph (1), see section 7431.
(Aug. 16, 1954, ch. 736, 68A Stat. 777; Oct. 4, 1976, Pub. L. 94-455, title XIX, 1906(b)(13)(A), 90 Stat. 1834; July 18, 1984, Pub. L. 98-369, div. A, title IV, 448(a), 98 Stat. 817 ;Pub. L. 105-34, title XII, Sec. 1205(a), Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat 788; Pub. L. 105-206, title VI, Sec. 6012(b), July 22, 1998, 112 Stat 685; Pub. L. 105-277, title IV, Sec. 4003, Oct. 21, 1998, 112 Stat 2681; Pub. L. 115-141, Div. U, title IV, Sec. 401(a)(280)(A)-(B), Mar. 23, 2018, 132 Stat. 348; Pub. L. 116-25, title II, Sec. 2303, July 1, 2019, 133 Stat. 981.)
BACKGROUND NOTES
Amendments to Subchapter
1971--Pub. L. 92-5, title I, 4(a)(2), Mar. 17, 1971, 85 Stat. 5, struck out item 6312 “Payment by United States notes and certificates of indebtedness”.
1969--Pub. L. 91-53, 2(f)(2), Aug. 7, 1969, 83 Stat. 93, added item 6317.
Repeals
Pub. L. 92-5, title I, 4(a)(2), Mar. 17, 1971, 85 Stat. 5, which struck out item 6312, was repealed by Pub. L. 97-258, 5(b), Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 1068, 1081.
AMENDMENTS
2019 - Subsec. (d)(2). Pub. L. 116-25, Sec. 2303, amended par. (2) by adding the two sentences at the end.
2018 - Subsec. (d)(3)(D). Pub. L. 115-141, Div. U, Sec. 401(a)(280)(A), amended subpar. (D) by substituting “section 103(g)” for “section 103(f)”.
Subsec. (d)(3)(D). Pub. L. 115-141, Div. U, Sec. 401(a)(280)(B), amended subpar. (D) by substituting “1602(g)” for “1602(f)”.
1998 - Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 105-277, Sec. 4003(k), amended subsec. (d) by substituting “under any such contract for the use of credit, debit, or charge cards for the payment of taxes imposed by subtitle A” for “under such contracts”.
Subsec. (e)(1). Pub. L. 105-206, Sec. 6012(b)(1), amended par. (1) by substituting “section 6103(k)(9)” for “section 6103(k)(8)”.
1997 - Sec. 6311. Pub. L. 105-34, Sec. 1205(a), amended section 6311. Prior to amendment it read as follows:
6311. Payment by check or money order
“(a) Authority to receive
It shall be lawful for the Secretary to receive for internal revenue taxes, or in payment for internal revenue stamps, checks or money orders, to the extent and under the conditions provided in regulations prescribed by the Secretary.
“(b) Check or money order unpaid
“(1) Ultimate liability
If a check or money order so received is not duly paid, the person by whom such check or money order has been tendered shall remain liable for the payment of the tax or for the stamps, and for all legal penalties and additions, to the same extent as if such check or money order had not been tendered.
“(2) Liability of banks and others
If any certified, treasurer's, or cashier's check (or other guaranteed draft) or any money order so received is not duly paid, the United States shall, in addition to its right to exact payment from the party originally indebted therefor, have a lien for the amount of such check (or draft) upon all the assets of the financial institution on which drawn or for the amount of such money order upon all the assets of the issuer thereof; and such amount shall be paid out of such assets in preference to any other claims whatsoever against such financial institution or issuer except the necessary costs and expenses of administration and the reimbursement of the United States for the amount expended in the redemption of the circulating notes of such financial institution.
1984--Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 98-369 substituted “or cashier's check (or other guaranteed draft)” for “or cashier's check”, “the amount of such check (or draft)” for “the amount of such check”, and “the financial institution” for “the bank or trust company”, and substituted “such financial institution” for “such bank” in two places.
1976--Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 94-455 struck out “or his delegate" after “Secretary” wherever appearing.
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 2019 AMENDMENTS
Amendment by Pub. L. 116-25, Sec. 2303, effective on the date of the enactment of this Act [Enacted: July 1, 2019].
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 2018 AMENDMENTS
Amendment by Pub. L. 115-141, Div. U, Sec. 401(a)(280)(A)-(B), effective March 23, 2018.
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1998 AMENDMENTS
Amendment by Sec. 4003(k) of Pub. L. 105-277 applicable as if included in the provisions of the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 to which it relates.
Amendment by Sec. 6012(b)(1) of Pub. L. 105-206 effective as if included in the provisions of the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 to which it relates [Effective Date of Pub. L. 105-34, Sec. 1205: the day 9 months after Aug. 5, 1997].
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1997 AMENDMENTS
Amendment by Sec. 1205(a) of Pub. L. 105-34 effective on the day 9 months after the date of the enactment of this Act [enacted: Aug. 5, 1997].
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1984 AMENDMENT
Section 448(b) of Pub. L. 98-369 provided that: “The amendments made by subsection (a) [amending this section] shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act [July 18, 1984].”
[6312. Repealed. Pub. L. 92-5, title I, 4(a)(2), Mar. 17, 1971, 85 Stat. 5]
Section, act Aug. 16, 1954, ch. 736, 68A Stat. 777, permitted the Secretary to receive Treasury bills, notes and certificates of indebtedness issued by the United States in payment of any internal revenue taxes or stamps.
Effective Date of Repeal
Section 4(a) of Pub. L. 92-5 provided that the repeal of this section shall be effective with respect to obligations issued after Mar. 3, 1971.
Repeals
Pub. L. 92-5, title I, 4(a)(2), Mar. 17, 1971, 85 Stat. 5, which repealed this section and provided for the effective date of that repeal, was itself repealed by Pub. L. 97-258, 5(b), Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 1068, 1081.