Tax related ID theft is when someone uses your information (name, SSN, etc.) to file a false tax return and then claims a fraudulent refund. The ID theft takes your refund and you don’t find out about it until you try to file your return electronically and are denied. The number one thing you can do to prevent this type of ID theft is to file early and file electronically. The IRS is “first-come, first-served”, meaning whomever files first, electronically, will be the only electronic return accepted. All others for that SSN will be blocked and have to file manually. This can lead to big delays for your refund. Filing season began January 28 this year.
The following is from the IRS Website on steps to take if you become a victim of ID theft:
“If you are a victim of identity theft, the Federal Trade Commission recommends these steps:
- File a complaint with the FTC at identitytheft.gov.
- Contact one of the three major credit bureaus to place a ‘fraud alert’ on your credit records:
- Equifax, www.Equifax.com, 800-525-6285
- Experian, www.Experian.com, 888-397-3742
- TransUnion, www.TransUnion.com, 800-680-7289
- Contact your financial institutions, and close any financial or credit accounts opened without your permission or tampered with by identity thieves.
If your SSN is compromised and you know or suspect you are a victim of tax-related identity theft, the IRS recommends these additional steps:
- Respond immediately to any IRS notice; call the number provided.
- Complete IRS Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit, if your efiled return rejects because of a duplicate filing under your SSN or you are instructed to do so. Use a fillable form at IRS.gov, print, then attach the form to your return and mail according to instructions.
If you previously contacted the IRS and did not have a resolution, contact us for specialized assistance at 1-800-908-4490″