According to the Office of the New York State Taxpayer Rights Advocate, taxpayers should be aware of fraudulent activity by scammers posing as debt collectors. Reportedly, these scammers are pretending to be IRS agents seeking to settle outstanding state tax debts. Their goal is to get consumers to send funds via a money order.
Signs of the Scam
According to the Attorney General’s Office, there are a few signs you can look for when you believe you may be a part of this scam:
The IRS never demands payments over the phone. According to their rules and regulations, they must contact taxpayers via writing when notifying them of an outstanding payment. Any phone solicitation for money is illegal and likely tied to a scam.
The IRS – or any legitimate government organization, for that matter – will never threaten to arrest or deport you for failure to satisfy a tax debt. Any verbal threat of arrest or deportation is a telltale sign of a scam.
Request for money order:
The IRS will not request a money order to satisfy a tax debt. If you receive a phone call asking for a money order, it is most likely a tax scam.
If you believe you have been involved in a tax scam or are currently being contacted by scammers, it’s important to remember a few things. First, do not give out any personal information. This includes your social security number, bank account information, or any other private information that could give scammers access to your personal finances or records. Second, contact the appropriate authorities immediately to warn them of the incident.
How to Get Help
For those who believe they have been victims of a tax scam, past or present, you can file a complaint with the Attorney General’s Office. This can be done by visiting www.ag.ny.gov or calling 1-800-771-7755.
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