You’ve received a bill from the IRS. According to this scary piece of paper, you owe thousands of dollars due to a mistake on your tax bill last year. But is this claim legitimate? The fact is, IRS scams are more common that most people realize. That piece of paper may be from a con artist who has no association with the IRS whatsoever. They are simply hoping you believe their claims and send them money.
Your tax preparer in Jamestown, ND is here to help you avoid these frauds. If you receive any notices from the IRS, look for the following red flags that they are fraudulent claims. If you’re ever unsure, don’t hesitate to contact a professional tax preparer in Jamestown, ND for assistance.
Did you receive a tax bill out of the blue? If you’ve been regular about paying your taxes, and you suddenly get a surprise bill, you should question it.
Is a supposed IRS agent threatening to arrest you for not paying your taxes? This over-the-top tactic should immediately alert you that something is not right. The IRS has protocols that include auditing and fees long before any other drastic measures would be implemented (and those typically involve garnishing wages, not throwing you behind bars). Only a scam artist will send you a first notice and threaten imprisonment.
If the first notice you receive of payment due offers a settlement, it’s highly unlikely that this is from the IRS. As you might expect, the real process of resolving a tax dispute is much longer and more complex than this. An offer of immediate settlement—“just send me $1,000 now and we’ll forget about the other $4,000 you owe”—is a red flag that the offer is not legit.
The IRS does not accept payments in the form of gift cards. If this option is mentioned, cut off all communication with the con artist right away.
Did you receive a call from the IRS on your cell phone? It wasn’t really them. The IRS doesn’t use phone calls to communicate, especially if you aren’t already in a tax resolution process with them. Just hang up.
Did you get an email from the IRS? If you really owed the IRS money, they would send you a notice via the U.S. Postal Service, not to your email account. If you receive a “tax due” notice in your inbox, delete it. In fact, don’t even open it. It probably contains a virus or other malware.
Keep Your Accounts Safe
IRS scams have unfortunately become more frequent and more creative in recent years. To keep your accounts safe, always partner with a professional tax preparer in Jamestown, ND. These experts can help identify scam tactics and ensure you don’t fall for any fraudulent claims. For premier tax services throughout the year, contact the experts at Craig S. Hanson, CPA. We’ve been the area’s go-to source for tax preparation since 1986.