The IRS issued a warning to taxpayers this week about a recent increase in tax return scams where taxpayers are told to file their claim asking for tax credits, refunds, or rebates which they are not entitled to take. Many cases involve unsuspecting taxpayers who don’t have any obligation to file a tax return at all. These people are deceived into filing fraudulent claims by unscrupulous or dishonest tax return preparers who often charge unreasonable fees for advice on how to file the false claims.
The IRS advises taxpayers to watch out for the following:
- Fictitious claims for refunds or rebates based on excess or withheld Social Security benefits.
- Claims that Treasury Form 1080 can be used to transfer funds from the Social Security Administration to the IRS enabling a payout from the IRS.
- Unfamiliar for-profit tax services teaming up with local churches.
- Home-made flyers and brochures implying credits or refunds are available without proof of eligibility.
- Offers of free money with no documentation required.
- Promises of refunds for “Low Income – No Documents Tax Returns.”
- Claims for the expired Economic Recovery Credit Program or Recovery Rebate Credit.
- Advice on claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit based on exaggerated reports of self-employment income.
For more information, visit the IRS website at www.IRS.gov, call the IRS toll-free number at 800-829-1040, or visit a local IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center. For questions about rebates, credit, and benefits from a federal agency, contact the relevant agency directly.