As people work towards gathering their documents and completing their tax returns, it is also the time of year when IRS scams become more prevalent. One particular scam is for someone to call you claiming to be from the IRS. These scammers are very good at what they do. They will set it up so that the call looks like it is coming from the IRS and they are direct and forceful. It is important that everyone be wary of unsolicited phone calls from the IRS.
Taxpayers should keep the following in mind:
- The IRS usually first contacts people by mail–not by phone–about unpaid taxes.
- The IRS won’t ask for payment using a pre-paid debit card or wire transfer.
- The IRS also won’t ask for a credit card number over the phone.
- The IRS will never threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
Never give information – payment or personal – over the phone to an unsolicited phone call from the IRS. Call your CPA first and discuss if it even makes sense that the IRS would be calling you. If you completed your own tax return, call a local CPA and ask them to do a quick review and see if they can see any reason why the IRS would be calling you. If the IRS is trying to reach you, you’ll find a CPA invaluable during the process. And if it is a scam, the money spent on a CPA is well worth the savings.