Has your Tax Return Been Stolen?
The Race to the IRS has started, are you racing?
Tax Return Stolen? I hope you are doing your taxes right now because if you’re not someone else might be. According to CNN there were 19 million fraudulent IRS returns filed since 2011. The IRS caught and stopped $10.63 billion dollars in recent fraudulent returns. With all of the data breaches that are going on now, you can no longer wait to file your return until April.
As a precautionary measure, file your return as soon as possible. When the IRS accepts your return and the criminal tries to come in after you to submit a fraudulent return, they are denied. If you wait until April 15 and the criminal files “your” return before you, then when you file the actual return, you’ll be denied because the IRS will have already received the fraudulent return.
Taxpayers who suspect their tax return has been stolen, should call the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 800-908-4490 and fill out an IRS Identity Theft Affidavit, Form 14039.
There’s just no reason to wait until the last minute anymore. Previously, I would not send in my taxes in until April 15th. Criminals usually don’t have access to W-2 forms, so they just make up income numbers and hope their phony return gets through the process. Once the IRS sends a refund to the criminal, your legitimate refund request will be delayed for months or denied.
The IRS has been increasing its anti-fraud department. In 2013, the IRS caught 389 identity theft suspects, made 109 arrests with 189 indictments. The agency now has more than 3,000 employees working on identity theft crimes.
One important step taxpayers can take is to keep calling. The more you’re calling in, the more the IRS is looking at your file. Correcting the problem is often a frustrating, drawn-out process. You have to file a form, explaining to the IRS that you are the victim of ID theft and provide proof that your Social Security number does indeed belong to you. The IRS must then review your complaint, which means it could take months for you to get your refund.
Don’t wait! Get your IRS tax returns done as soon as possible! If the crook is successful, your legitimate return will be kicked back and the refund denied because the IRS computers will show that you were already paid.
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