Senate Aging Committee Fraud Hotline Sees Increase in Reports Related to IRS Phone Scams
Chairman Susan Collins and Ranking Member Claire McCaskill Warn Seniors
WASHINGTON, DC-- With the tax filing deadline just over a month away, Senate Special Committee on Aging Chairman Susan Collins and Ranking Member Claire McCaskill announced that the Committee’s fraud hotline is experiencing an increased number of reports of scam artists who call seniors pretending to be IRS officials. Through this scam, of which there are reported to be multiple variations, criminals generally demand immediate payment and threaten retaliation, such as home foreclosure and even arrest, if payment is not made.
Chairman Collins and Ranking Member McCaskill are warning seniors to beware of these calls and are encouraging seniors to continue to report specific instances to the Aging Committee’s toll-free Senior Fraud Hotline: 1-855-303-9470. These reports enable the Committee to investigate and help put a stop to scams targeted to seniors.
The IRS has released several tips to help taxpayers identify suspicious calls that may be part of a scam.
- The IRS will never call a taxpayer to demand immediate payment, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed a bill.
- The IRS will never demand that a taxpayer pay taxes without giving him or her the opportunity to question or appeal the amount claimed to be owed.
- The IRS will never ask for a credit or debit card number over the phone.
- The IRS will never threaten to bring in local police or other law enforcement groups to have a taxpayer arrested for not paying.
- The IRS will never require a taxpayer to use a specific payment method for taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.
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In addition to calling the Aging Committee Fraud Hotline, seniors can report potential instances of scams or fraud to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) at 1-800-366-4484 or at: www.tigta.gov.