How To Tell if the IRS is Really Contacting You

For most taxpayers, taxes can be a somewhat obscure thing. They can be tough to wrap your head around or be certain you’ve done everything correctly down to the letter. You may not think you’ve done anything wrong, but if you see the IRS trying to communicate with you, you may question your tax returns. There may have been some box left unchecked. The problem is, many of these communications are not legitimate.

Recently, taxpayers have been receiving telephone calls that seem to be from IRS. These calls are frequently automated or frightening in their message. They can sound urgent, demanding you send additional money or offer up your bank account information. No matter what they are asking, it is a scam. The IRS will never just call someone on the phone. In the extraordinarily rare situation they would need to call someone – such as if they need to tour a business they are auditing – they would only call after sending several letters in the mail warning of the occurrence first. If you received a scary voicemail, there is no need to worry – it is not from the IRS.

The IRS does not demand that people pay with a specific method, such as wire transfer, PayPal, or even gift cards. They do not demand immediate tax payment over the phone. Anyone trying to get you to pay your taxes at that very moment is a scam. They also do not threaten to bring in local law enforcement or immigration officers if you do not follow their commands. Even if most taxpayers want to avoid interactions with them, the IRS is a cordial and civil agency, and they initially correspond with taxpayers via written notices sent through the mail.

The scams also come in the form of email. Plenty of people have received emails from the IRS asking them to verify their personal information. This is a trap to steal your address, social security number, or bank account. They can also come with the promise of refunds for those who answer and provide what they want. The IRS does not use email to communicate about tax debts or refunds.

Letters in the mail have a higher chance of being legitimate, simply because the IRS actually does communicate with letters. Just like the other methods, however, they will not be asking for your personal information or promising refunds. If you have received a letter from the IRS that you are unsure about, please double check it against their official government website or contact them yourself from that same website. They will let you know if they did initiate communication with you.

At the end of the day, people should be skeptical about communication they see purporting to be from the IRS. You should never send your personal information or do anything in exchange for a promised refund. Real communication from the IRS comes in the mail and happens rarely. If you do need legal assistance with the IRS, contact Weisberg Kainen Mark PL today. We are experienced with the IRS and know a legitimate issue when we see one.

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Weisberg Kainen Mark, PL

As experienced trial lawyers with a passion for justice, our firm provides clients with compelling advocacy, attorney availability, and creative solutions to your tax or criminal law matters.

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