4 Tax Scams Identified By The IRS

Posted by: Brookside Admin

Tax season can be a stressful time for many. If you haven't planned ahead and been organized throughout the year, the looming tax return deadline of April 15th can suddenly be extremely daunting. To make matters worse, their are many scams and frauds related to your tax return that could cost you money, incur an audit or worse. At Brown Kinion and Company, our CPAs are available to help you gather the proper tax documents and file correctly and on-time. The IRS, meanwhile, is offering help for avoiding those erroneous claims for big refunds by compiling their annual "Dirty Dozen" list of tax scams.

  •  Phone Calls

The use of threatening phone calls has been a widely use tax scam for many years. Someone claiming to be an IRS representative contacts you and threatens punishments like arrest, license revocation and deportation. The goal of these scams, of course, is to convince you to divulge financial information. Particularly around tax season, be especially wary of phone calls and other forms of communication that threaten immediate punishment unless you give them payment information. 

  • Fraudulent Tax Preparers

Each tax season, a number of tax preparers crop up in every community. Many of these claim to be able to get you a bigger refund than anyone else or that they'll significantly reduce your tax obligations. In almost all cases, claims like these are a red flag that the preparer isn't qualified and could be a scam. There are also many seasonal tax shops that pop up each spring. While some of these are scams, others are actually legitimate. However, they're unable to offer full-service because they won't be around should you be audited or need further help with tax issues. 

  • False Charities

Charitable donations tend to increase around tax time. Either you've just gotten your tax return back and have extra money to donate, or you're reminded that donations can be claimed on next year's tax return. This leads to an increase in false charities asking for hand-outs as well. Spend a little extra time doing some homework on any charity you're not familiar with before you give. IRS.gov even has some tools available to check the veracity of charities. 

  • False Claims

There are a number of ways to falsify your tax return in an attempt to cheat the system. All of these will end in an audit and severe punishment from the IRS, however. Do not engage in or trust a tax preparer who suggests using tactics like falsifying income, abusive tax shelters or excessive deduction claims. 

For tax advice you can trust and to get the refund you deserve, contact Brown Kinion and Company. Our fully qualified CPAs will help you through each phase of the process and we're available year round for additional help.