ruben studdard

Ruben Studdard

*As TMZ so aptly observes, it’s never a good sign when a singer has had more tax liens than platinum albums.

But, unfortunately that’s the situation former “American Idol” champ Ruben Studdard has finds himself in these days.

According to docs filed in Alabama, Studdard and his estranged wife Zuri owe $180,216.73 in federal taxes for the year 2009.

You see, Studdard is no stranger to tax problems in Alabama — he had a property lien filed against him back in 2008 to the tune of nearly $200,000.

If you recall, Ruben and Zuri went their separate ways back in November.

And for the record, calls to Studdard’s camp were not returned.