Tax fraud is no laughing matter

As it is the season for folks to wrap up filing their taxes, the Woodburn Police Department wanted to pass on some information about how to deal with income tax fraud, courtesy of the Federal Trade Commission (ftc.gov). There have already been some local reports of tax fraud/identity theft.

When we work, our employers report our earnings to the IRS using our Social Security Number. If another person has used your SSN fraudulently to gain employment, their employer will report their earnings to the IRS under the SSN as well. Then you report your earnings to the IRS when you file taxes, but the IRS will show that you’ve made more money than you have claimed … or worse, the other person has already filed taxes using the SSN and received your IRS refund. This is income tax fraud.

If you receive a notice from the IRS indicating there is a similar problem with your taxes — contact the IRS immediately. Report the fraud and ask for the appropriate affidavit forms so that they can help you to get your claim resolved with minimal issues. Always remember to document the communication between yourself and the IRS and keep copies of letters and affidavits for your files.

The IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit can be reached at 1-800-908-4490 or via Internet at www.irs.gov/identitytheft

Also, if you believe your personal information has been compromised, but you’re not certain if it has been used fraudulently — check out http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/feature-0014-identity-theft.

The section for identity theft will guide you through how to prevent identity theft, how to find out if your information has been used, and what to do if you have become a victim of ID Theft.

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