James D. Lynch
Taxpayers Should Be Wary of Unsolicited Calls from the IRS.
Taxpayers who get an unexpected or unsolicited phone call from the IRS should be wary – it’s probably a scam. Phone calls continue to be one of the most common ways that thieves try to get taxpayers to provide personal information. These scammers then use that information to gain access to the victim’s bank or other account.
When a taxpayer answers the phone, it might be a recording or a person claiming to be from the IRS. Sometimes the scammer tells the taxpayer they owe money and must pay right away. They might also say the person has a refund waiting, and then they ask for bank account information over the phone.
Taxpayers should not take the bait and fall for this trick. Here are several tips that will help taxpayers avoid becoming a scam victim.
The real IRS will NOT: ● Call to demand immediate payment ● Call someone if they owe taxes without first sending a bill in the mail ● Demand tax payment and not allow the taxpayer to question or appeal the amount owed ● Require that someone pay their taxes a certain way, such as with a prepaid debit card ● Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone ● Threaten to bring in local police or other agencies to arrest a taxpayer who doesn’t pay ● Threaten a lawsuit