Tax Preparation Fraud
Tax preparation fraud generally involves the orchestrated preparation and filing of false income tax returns (in either paper or electronic form) by unscrupulous preparers. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- Inflated personal or business expenses
- False deductions claimed
- Unallowable credits or excessive exemptions, fraudulent tax credits, such as the Earned Income Tax credit
- Filed a tax return using a taxpayer’s name and/or Social Security number without their knowledge or consent
- Altered taxpayer’s return without their knowledge or consent
- Provided the taxpayers with a copy of their return, which is different from what was filed with the IRS
- Received all or a portion of the taxpayer’s refund without their knowledge or consent
- Had a taxpayer’s refund or a portion of their refund directly deposited into an account that was the preparer’s
- Promised the taxpayer a refund that was never received, received but was a different amount, or received a refund check that “bounced”
The preparer’s clients may or may not have knowledge of the false expenses, deductions, exemptions and/or credits shown on their tax returns. This is why it is very important taxpayers review their returns carefully before signing anything!
For tips about finding a tax preparer, click here.