IRS Phone Scams: The Dirty Dozen

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Kash Chandani & Co. CPA’s, we’ll fight the IRS for you!

“Scammers impersonating IRS agents over the phone are once again topping the annual ‘ Dirty Dozen ’ list of tax scams.

The Dirty Dozen list is compiled annually by the IRS and lists several common scams taxpayers need to watch out for.

The IRS has seen a surge of aggressive and threatening phone calls by criminals impersonating IRS agents. Many scammers threaten police arrest, deportation, license revocation and other things during the call.

"Taxpayers across the nation face a deluge of these aggressive phone scams. Don’t be fooled by callers pretending to be from the IRS in an attempt to steal your money," said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen in a news release. "We continue to say if you are surprised to be hearing from us, then you’re not hearing from us."

Five things the IRS will never do:

  • Call to demand immediate payment, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill.

  • 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.

  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.

  • Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.

If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS and asking for money, but you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you do hang up immediately and do not give out any information. Report the call to TIGTA by using their ‘IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting’ web page or calling 800.366.4484. Also report it to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the ‘FTC Complaint Assistant’ on FTC.gov. Please add ‘IRS Telephone Scam’ in the notes.

If you know you owe, or think you may owe taxes call the IRS at 800.829.1040 for help.

In January, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) announced they have received reports of roughly 896,000 contacts since October 2013 and have become aware of over 5,000 victims who have collectively paid over $26.5 million as a result of the scam.”


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