Scam Alert: Watch Out for Erroneous Refunds;
Beware of Fake Calls to Return Money to a Collection Agency

Some criminals have a new twist on an old scam. After stealing taxpayer data and filing fraudulent tax returns, these criminals use the taxpayers’ real bank accounts for the deposit.

Thieves are then using various tactics to reclaim the refund from the taxpayers, and their versions of the scam may continue to evolve.  Some times the erroneous refunds are followed up by telephone calls from theives posing as the Internal Revenue Service or a collection agency demanding a return of the money.

In another version, the taxpayer who received the erroneous refund gets an automated call with a recorded voice saying he is from the IRS and threatens the taxpayer with criminal fraud charges, an arrest warrant and a “blacklisting” of their Social Security Number. The recorded voice gives the taxpayer a case number and a telephone number to call to return the refund.

In a news release, the IRS has offered a step-by-step explanation for how to return the erroneous refunds and avoid being scammed.  You can find the news release on irs.gov.  If you need additional information, please call our office.

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