• Tax Scam

    Reports have begun about telephone scammers making calls claiming to be with the IRS, threatening individuals with arrest, revocation of business or driverís license, or who knows what scam, if back taxes are not paid immediately.

    To avoid being pulled in, what you need to know is that the IRS does not, repeat not, initiate collection efforts by phone or e-mail. It uses regular mail. If you have filed taxes annually and have not moved since filing your last tax return, you will receive written notices of any tax liability mailed to the address shown on your last filed tax return.

    Also, these thieves often ask for payment by credit card, prepaid debit card or wire transfer. Understand, the IRS does not ask for credit card numbers nor does it ever request you to pay with prepaid debit cards or to pay by wire transfer.

    In a recent article, CPA Douglas B. Gordon says if you receive such a call you need to:

    Remain calm. The scammers rely on fear to coerce you into paying.

    Do not provide or confirm any personal or financial information, such as PIN numbers, credit card numbers, social security numbers, passwords, etc.

    If they provide you with a phone number in which to call them back, do not call the numberóthat only lets them know that you are anxious.

    If you answer a suspicious phone call, ask for a call back number and the employeeís badge number. Then confirm the details with the IRS at 1(800) 829-1040.

    Consider giving them the name and phone number of your tax preparer or tax attorney and let the scammer know that they have been empowered to represent you in all tax matters. Then call your representative and let them know about the call.

    If you know that you owe taxes or think that you might owe taxes call the IRS at 1(800) 829-1040. The IRS can let you know if there is a payment issue. Be aware, however, that wait times can be long.

    Call the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1(800) 366-4484 to report the incident.

    If someone unexpectedly calls claiming to be from the IRS and threatens police arrest, deportation or license revocation if you donít pay immediately, that is a sign that it really isnít the IRS calling,Ē says IRS Acting Commissioner, Danny Werfel
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