Tax Return Identity Theft – What Should You Do?
Mar 26, 2014
Recent reports of identity theft related to tax filings have been reported by local dentists. We would like to take a moment to remind you that the IRS uses your Social Security Number (SSN) to make sure your filing is accurate and complete, and that you get any refund you are due. An unexpected notice or letter from the IRS could alert you that someone else is using your SSN. However, the IRS does NOT contact taxpayers by sending an email, text or social media message that asks for personal or financial information. If you get an email that claims to be from the IRS, do not reply or click on any links. Instead, forward it to email@example.com.
If someone uses your SSN to file for a tax refund before you do, the IRS might think you already filed and got your refund. When you file your return later, IRS records will show the first filing and refund, and you’ll get a notice or letter from the IRS saying more than one return was filed for you.
If you think someone has used your SSN for a tax refund or the IRS sends you a notice or letter indicating a problem —contact the IRS Identity protection unit immediately, 1-800-908-4490. Specialists will work with you to get your tax return filed, get you any refund you are due, and protect your IRS account from identity thieves in the future. Make sure you take the following steps to minimize the effectss
- Complete IRS Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit, and attach it to a paper-filed tax return to the IRS with a letter of explanation. You will also need to include with the Form 14039 the following:
- A clear and legible photocopy of your identification – a passport, driver’s license, social security card, or other US Federal/State government issued identification.
- Telephone # to best reach you (home, work, cell) and a best time to call
- Contact the Federal Trade Commission to report the identity theft atwww.consumer.gov/idtheft, or call the hotline at 877-438-4338.
- Contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213.
- Contact each of the three major credit bureaus:
- Equifax www.equifax.com 1-800-525-6285
- Experian www.experian.com 1-888-397-3742
- TransUnion www.transunion.com 1-800-680-7289
- Notify your personal financial institutions/banks.
- Consider filing a police report, but without a lot of information, the local police often won’t file a report.
Once the IRS receives the Identity Theft Affidavit they will begin their investigation. Please be aware there are significant processing delays with this unit. You must allow 204 days (6-8 months) for their investigation. There are over 1 million cases, so it is a long process! If no information has been provided after 204 days, then we suggest calling the specialized unit at 1-800-908-4490.