Tax scammers are using the appearance of
‘tax preparers’ to trick taxpayers into claiming huge refunds by filing
fraudulent tax returns. The target of tax scammers is those taxpayers who are
not required to file a tax return.
The IRS receives fraudulent tax returns
regularly. Some are filed by taxpayers, others by fraudulent tax preparers,
with the remaining being filed by tax scammers using stolen identities. The IRS
blocks many fake tax returns, but not all. There have been cases where tax
thieves have received huge refunds after the IRS processed fake tax returns.
Tax scammers in the guise of tax
preparers lure taxpayers with the promise of a large refund if they file a bogus
tax return. The scammers then file tax returns on behalf of the taxpayers with
false income figures, and false tax deductions and credits, including the Veteran’s
Disability Benefits and American Opportunity Tax Credit to claim the maximum refund
The repercussions of participating or
falling victim to fraudulent tax preparers can be dire for taxpayers. As the
taxpayer signs the tax return, the responsibility instantly lies with the
taxpayer. The punishment for tax fraud is heavy penalties and/or imprisonment.
The IRS publishes the Dirty Dozen Tax
Scams list each year to inform taxpayers about the top tax scams. Although the
IRS must make efforts to enhance the efficiency of their tax return processing methods,
it is important for taxpayers to ensure their safety.
What you can do to stay safe from
fraudulent tax preparers:
- Sign the tax return
after your tax preparer has entered all details including the Preparer Tax
Identification Number (PTIN).
- Contact a legitimate
tax preparer. Avoid unsolicited invitations by tax preparers.
- Get a copy of the tax
Even if the IRS cannot beat tax
scammers, you can with the right information.
Labels: IRS, Tax Filing, Tax News, Tax Refunds, Tax Scams, Taxpayers