Though tax season is over, tax scammers work year-round to steal money and personal information from the unwary. Even if elderly taxpayers and those who speak English as a second language are most often targeted, anyone can get caught up in a tax scam. The Treasury estimates that tax scams have cost victims over $20 million since October 2013. To avoid becoming a statistic, follow these guidelines:
- Scammers rely on fear and intimidation to do their work. If you receive a call or email that is threatening or aggressive, chances are that it is a scam. The IRS will never bring in the police or immigration authorities because of unpaid taxes.
- Scammers often “spoof” caller ID, meaning phone calls may appear to come from the IRS or another official number. It’s always a good idea to ask for a badge or case number and call the IRS directly at 800-829-1040.
- The IRS will never call you to demand immediate payment or call you before sending a written notice in the mail. You will always have an opportunity to appeal the amount that you owe.
- Never pay any taxes owed by Western Union or prepaid debit card.
For more information about tax scams contact a qualified tax expert or get more information on IRS.gov.
Tip courtesy of IRS.gov[