Beware of tax scams! The IRS warns the public to be wary during tax season. Here is the IRS's 2018 ‘Dirty Dozen’ list of tax scams.
1. Phishing: Stay on alert for fake emails or websites posing as the IRS to steal your personal information.
2. Phone Scams: Criminals are getting ahead of the game and making phone calls impersonating the IRS, don't fall for it!
3. Identity Theft: It is encouraged to always be on alert for phony tactics to steal your identity. All year round...not just tax season.
4. Return Preparer Fraud: Be on the lookout for unscrupulous return preparers.
5. Fake Charities: Take a second look at charitable organizations. Groups and organizations solicit donations from unsuspecting contributors. Be wary of charities with names similar to familiar or nationally-known organizations.
6. Inflated Refund Claims: Check your tax preparer! Especially the ones that promise you an inflated refund. Don't sign any blank returns hoping for the best of your tax year.
7. Excessive Claims for Business Credits: Avoid improperly using or claiming a tax credit.
8. Falsely Padding Deductions on Returns: You might be tempted, but don't try to exaggerate the truth. Avoid falsely inflated your deductions or expenses.
9. Falsifying Income to Claim Credits: Make sure to file the most accurate tax return possible.
10. Frivolous Tax Arguments: Yes, there are schemes to encourage taxpayers to not pay taxes. Don't fall for it. The penalty for filing a frivolous tax return is $5,000.
11. Abusive Tax Shelters: If it sounds too good to be true, then most likely it's not true. Abusive tax structures are sometimes used to avoid paying taxes.
12. Offshore Tax Avoidance: Hiding money and income out of the country is a no bueno! Make sure to always be caught up on your tax-filing responsibilities.
For more information on tax scams, be sure to visit the IRS website HERE.