Over the past few months, there has been an increase in the number of fraudulent phone calls from people representing themselves as the IRS.
If targeted by an IRS scam, you will likely receive a phone call, letter, or an e-mail saying you owe thousands of dollars for back taxes. The letters look authentic. They are worded in a heavy handed, threatening manner. It plays into the fears of the big bad wolf (the IRS) coming to get Little Red Riding Hood, which is you, the American Tax Payer.
Some of the calls can be quite scary with threats of IRS lawsuits and state “if a lawyer does not call they wish you luck as ‘the situation unfolds around you.’”
Typically, they look for ways to get access to your cash – either through your bank account information or some other electronic form of payment, something that can’t be traced. Always be extremely diligent when giving out such information even to the IRS.
Know this – the IRS doesn’t make phone calls!
The IRS does not correspond via e-mail or phone calls as the initial point of contact. If contacted by the IRS, you will receive a letter. If you are married, both of you will receive a letter. This is your first indication this may be legitimate. Your next step is to go directly to IRS.gov to find the proper phone numbers and start a conversation. Do not call the number in the letter or click on a link in an email.
According to the IRS website, the IRS will never:
- Call to demand immediate payment over the phone, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill
- Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying
- Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe
- Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer
- Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone
If you would like to read more about this scam or IRS recommendations, please click here: Scam Phone Calls Continue; IRS Identifies Five Easy Ways to Spot Suspicious Calls
As your family’s well-being is always our concern, we ask you share this information through social media and email.