Every year the IRS, and our office, warns taxpayers about potential scams. From our experience, this year the most common scam was a phone call. The taxpayer would get a phone call and is asked for personal information. Any push back and they are immediately threatened. We had one client last month that was told “if you don’t give me this information you will be arrested within 45 minutes.” Another client was bullied into buying a $2,000 iTunes gift card for the threatening “IRS agent.” For many people this may sound ridiculous, but for a foreign taxpayer or for someone currently experiencing tax problems or owing tax debts, this can be very scary. To help deal with these situations here are some guidelines.
The IRS will NEVER:
- Call you to demand immediate payment. The IRS will not call you if you owe taxes without first sending you a bill in the mail.
- Demand tax payment and not allow you to question or appeal the amount you owe.
- Require that you pay your taxes a certain way. For example, demand that you pay with a prepaid debit card.
- Ask for your credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
- Threaten to bring in local police or other agencies to arrest you for not paying.
- Threaten you with a lawsuit.
If you are ever in doubt, kindly ask for the person’s name, title, id, and call back number. Tell them you would first like to consult with an attorney and will call them back. The IRS and other taxing agencies will always give you a few hours, if not days, weeks or months, to address the situation if you remain in contact with them and are making an earnest effort. Please contact us at Hone Maxwell LLP if you have any questions regarding your tax debt or collection procedures.