Identity thieves have taken their game to law-abiding tax payers. Dishonest people file tax returns under the name and social security number of another person and claim refunds from the IRS. When the rightful person then files the real return, the IRS refuses to accept it, saying someone has already filed under that name. If this happens it is important to act quickly. You need to file a report with the local police or sheriff and present that to the IRS along with a paper tax return. (You may not e-file in this situation.)
Another scam is if you receive an email from the IRS. The IRS NEVER sends emails. If you get an email from someone appearing to be the IRS, DO NOT open it. This is a scam and one way identity thieves try to get your personal information. Be aware that the IRS can call you and they will if you haven’t filed or paid your tax returns. In some cases a revenue officer may come to your door, but they will never email. If you get an email that is posing as the IRS you should forward it to email@example.com so they can take steps to resolve the problem.
Should you choose to e-file your taxes next year there are a few preventative steps you can take to decrease the odds of identity theft. Do not use a public computer to file, and do not use a public network either. Always shred or burn your old tax records that you no longer need. (You don’t need to keep paperwork older than seven years.) If you are a victim of tax identity theft or if you have issues with the IRS please call my office today 312-664-6649 and see https://chicagotaxteam.com/why-us/.