The day that your debt is actually assessed by a taxing authority, a ten year clock starts ticking. While this is not true of all taxing authorities, it is the most common time frame a taxpayer will deal with in regards to their debts. After the 10 years go by, any remaining debt is written off. Keep in mind that there are exceptions to this rule and it should not be relied upon as a crutch. Penalties and interest accrue daily, so it is not a good idea to try to “outlive” the statute, just in case your situation changes for the worse and your statute is extended.