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IRS Hits MC Hammer With A Hefty Tax Lien


December 18, 2013
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MC Hammer, known for his iconic harem pants and 1990s hit “U Can’t Touch This,” has been slapped with a hefty tax sentence from the Internal Revenue Service, who argue that the rapper has failed to settle tax liabilities incurred in the mid- to late 1990s.

MC Hammer, whose real name is Stanley Kirk Burrell, is accused of owing the federal tax agency roughly $800,000 in back taxes dating back to 1996 and 1997. In response to Burrell’s failure to settle his balance under tax law, the agency slapped the rapper and his wife with a $798,033.48 lien, Forbes reports. Burrell’s financial struggles persisted prior to 1996 when he first got into tax trouble. The musician, whose previous net worth was estimated to be in the $33 million mark, sought bankruptcy in 1996, citing $13 million in debt.

MC Hammer

However, federal tax debt is not typically discharged under bankruptcy, and Burrell was still required to settle his tax bill.

Despite the lien, MC Hammer is asserting that he has already settled his tax balance, and took to the social media site Twitter to say that his balance was paid and he has a receipt to prove it. However, he also indicated that if the agency proves he failed to pay his bill, he would cooperate.

“I put over $5 million in my account [and] asked the IRS how much do you want? They put it in writing, I paid them and got a receipt,” the rapper wrote, according to Forbes. “Render unto Cesar what is Cesar’s…owe no man but to love him. Suing me from 18 years ago? If they win, I’ll pay them. Life is good.”

The IRS is typically restrained to a three-year statute to bring proceedings against those who violate tax law, but these thresholds can be extended in many cases, and tax liens are not uncommon in instances when the IRS is facing challenges collecting liabilities.