Tax identity theft happens when someone else fraudulently uses your Social Security Number (SSN) to file a tax return or obtain employment. This can result in a number of tax returns, such as:
- Your return will be rejected and you won’t be able to e-fie.
- Your tax refund may be delayed.
- The IRS may assess tax against you incorrectly.
- Your return may be adjusted because of information returns fraudulently filed under your SSN.
Look for the following signs that you may be a victim of tax identity theft.
Your Return is Rejected
E-filed tax returns can be rejected for many reasons. If your return is rejected because of a duplicate SSN, this could mean that someone is using your personal information to try to receive a fraudulent tax refund check.
The same issue can arise if one of your dependents is the victim of tax identity theft. You’ll only be able to file by mailing in a paper return. E-filed returns will continue to be rejected in these cases.
You may also want to file the IRS Identity Theft Affidavit and submit it along with your paper tax return.
You Receive IRS Letter 488C3
Sometimes the IRS flags a return as suspicious. In these cases, you may receive Letter 488C3 in the mail. This notice is asking you to confirm your identity.
You may confirm your identity over the phone or by visiting an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center. Once you’ve confirmed your identity, the IRS will ask you whether you actually filed the tax return in question. If not, the return will be removed from your IRS tax records.
You may be given an Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN) to use when you file your tax returns. This provides an added layer of security so that it’s harder for someone else to file a return using your SSN.
You Receive Certain Other IRS Notices
The IRS sends many types of notices in the mail. You should read them all carefully because they may inform you of a serious tax problem.
For example, an IRS notice may inform you of a tax debt or an adjustment to your return for a tax year where you never filed a return. This is an indication that someone else filed using your SSN.
If you don’t take action, the IRS may assess additional tax against you or begin collection activities. Contact a tax attorney for help sorting out your IRS tax identity theft case.
The Gartzman Law Firm can help you with tax identity theft and other IRS tax problems. Use our contact form to request a consultation with an Atlanta tax resolution attorney.