1. Offer in Compromise (OIC) is always our plan A for tax resolution. The debt is settled for less than what is owed. Your record is cleared of liens within one year. Here's our latest blog entry on handling OIC's including a video: Getting an OIC in 2016.
2. Currently Not Collectible (CNC) is always our plan B. Your debt still stands but the IRS closes collections against you minus the filing of a tax lien. When we have a client that doesn't meet the OIC criteria - Home equity usually - we'll pursue CNC. More on that avenue here: CNC vs. OIC.
3. Installment Agreements/Payment Plans (PP) are our plan C. We will always try to get our customer a Penalty Abatement if PP is the only option. But PP's need to be handled very delicately: a recent blog post talks about how to handle PP's creatively for our clients: Making the Most of your Payment Plan.