Tax identity theft occurs when someone uses your stolen social security number to file a fraudulent tax return and claim a refund. Most victims are unaware of this issue until they try to file their own return and receive a notice that a return with that social security number has already been filed.
According to the IRS, if your social security number is compromised and you know or suspect you are a victim of tax-related identity theft, take the following steps:
- Respond immediately to any IRS notice; call the number provided.
- Complete IRS Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit. Use a fillable form at IRS.gov, print and then mail or fax according to the instructions.
- Continue to pay your taxes and file your tax return, even if you must do so by paper.
The IRS has recently announced several new initiatives to work with tax industry professionals in order to improve information sharing and to increase detection and prevention of refund fraud. The initiatives include taxpayer authentication, identifying fraud, assessing information, cyber security framework and increasing taxpayer awareness and communication. These initiatives, along with the efforts of the Taxpayer Protection Program and Taxpayer Advocate Services, should continue to combat identity theft and help field victim’s concerns.
Just as a reminder, The IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to request personal or financial information. This includes any type of electronic communication, such as text messages and social media channels.
Seek the services of a legal or tax adviser before implementing any ideas contained in this blog. To reach a financial advisor at Lane Gorman Trubitt PLLC, call (214) 871.7500 or email email@example.com.