IRS Tax Season Fraud Alert
With income tax season quickly approaching, our department will also begin noticing an increase in the reporting of fraudulent IRS tax scam calls to our local residents.
Taxpayers may encounter individuals impersonating IRS officials – usually over the telephone and more increasingly via email. Don’t get scammed. We want you to understand how and when the IRS contacts taxpayers and help you determine whether a contact you may have received is truly from an IRS employee.
The IRS initiates most contacts through regular mail delivered by the United States Postal Service. Even then, be skeptical. Often scammers duplicate and use official federal logo’s and return mailing addresses on their mailings to trick you.
However, there are special circumstances in which the IRS will call or come to a home or business, such as when a taxpayer has an overdue tax bill, to secure a delinquent tax return or a delinquent employment tax payment, or to tour a business as part of an audit or during criminal investigations. If you believe an imposter is at your home or business, demand to see their official identification, and if still suspicious, call 911 right away. Those being investigated by the IRS will generally first receive a series of letters (called “notices”) in the US mail.
Here is what the IRS does NOT do:
- Call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer. Generally, the IRS will first mail a bill to any taxpayer who owes taxes.
- Demand that you pay taxes without the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe. You have rights as a tax payer.
- Threaten to bring in local police, immigration officers or other law-enforcement to have you arrested for not paying. The IRS also cannot revoke your driver’s license, business licenses, or immigration status. Threats like these are common tactics scam artists use to trick victims into buying into their schemes.
For more information, please visit the official Internal Revenue Service’s official website www.irs.gov