Don’t Fall Prey To The Scammer-Time Blues
Again, just on the last day of May, and the beginning of summer, the IRS warned taxpayers not to let their guard down when it comes to scams.
Scammers know the long, lazy summer days distract taxpayers who are more focused on having fun now that tax season is over. And, like any criminal, scammers know their chances of success are greater when their target is not paying close attention. In addition, many taxpayers who may have recently filed on an extension may not have heard back from the IRS yet.
According to the IRS, “Summertime tends to be a favorite period for scammers because many taxpayers have recently filed a return and may be waiting for a response from the IRS.” As reported on a Fox news source, “The IRS and its Security Summit partners – the state tax agencies and the tax industry – urge taxpayers to remain alert to tax scams year-round, especially immediately after the tax filing season ends. Even after the April deadline passes, the tax scam season doesn’t end.”
What follows below is a list of actions The IRS (and its authorized private collection agencies) will never do.
- They will never call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer.
The IRS does not use these methods for tax payments. Generally, the IRS will first mail a bill to any taxpayer who owes taxes. All tax payments should only be made payable to the U.S. Treasury and checks should never be made payable to third parties.
- They will never threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have the taxpayer arrested for not paying.
- They will never demand that taxes be paid without giving the taxpayer the opportunity to question or appeal the amount owed.
- They will never ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
Everyone knows that “there ain’t no cure for the summertime blues.” And let me tell you this, there sure ain’t no cure for the scammer-time blues! So, have fun, and keep your wits about you!