You did everything right this year: finished filing your taxes, checked them twice, and turned them in on time. But did you file your taxes with a legitimate tax preparer? Have clicked on an email claiming to be from the IRS? Tax season can be a headache, but falling for a tax scam could make it even worse. To keep your hard-earned dollars out of the hands of scammers, the IRS has put together its annual "Dirty Dozen" list of tax scams. Though taxpayers can encounter these schemes throughout the year, they peak during tax season.
Phishing, phone scams, and identity theft top the "Dirty Dozen" list this year. It's important to be cautious of fake emails, phone calls, or any other attempts to steal your personal information. Remember, the IRS will never call or email you demanding payment or threatening arrest. Taxpayers should also keep in mind that, though a vast majority of tax professionals provide high-quality service, there are dishonest preparers out there. Follow the IRS's tips on how to select a legitimate preparer. Taxpayers are legally responsible for what is on their tax return, even if it is prepared by someone else. Therefore, be on the lookout for inflated refund claims or deductions, improperly claimed business credits, false claim credits and other schemes. Fraudsters will use flyers, advertisements or phony storefronts to talk their victims into offers that are too good to be true. When in doubt, taxpayers should seek an independent opinion. Don't get caught up in madness this March - be aware of the IRS' "Dirty Dozen" tax scams for 2017! Stay safe!