Newscasts

PNS Daily Newscast - April 26, 2018 


President Trump’s lawyer due in court today. Also on our rundown: HUD Secretary Ben Carson proposes raising the rent on low-income families; plus we will look at efforts to address addiction in Ohio: what’s working, and what’s not.

Daily Newscasts

2016 NH Resolution: Beat Fraudsters to Your Tax Refund Check

Tax fraud is costing more than $5 billion per year, according to the latest  numbers, but consumer experts say you can resolve to beat these scammers to the punch by filing your IRS return early in 2016. (kenteegardin via flckr)
Tax fraud is costing more than $5 billion per year, according to the latest numbers, but consumer experts say you can resolve to beat these scammers to the punch by filing your IRS return early in 2016. (kenteegardin via flckr)
December 28, 2015

CONCORD, N.H. - It's the time of year for resolutions and Granite Staters can resolve now to beat scammers to their IRS refund check in 2016 by taking a few easy steps. The latest General Accounting Office numbers identify tax fraud as a major problem, with the IRS paying out $5.8 billion in fraudulent returns in 2013.

Norma Boyce is a CPA and a Volunteer Fraud Fighter with AARP-New Hampshire.

She says the longer you wait to file your taxes, the more time that gives scammers to file a false return in your name. Boyce says you can fight tax fraud now with three easy steps.

"File early, make sure your home computer system is secure with firewalls and antivirus, and use a professional tax preparer that is reputable and reliable," says Boyce.

For those who choose to turn to an expert, Boyce says you can check them out to be sure they are on the level at the IRS website which lists enrolled agents, attorneys and Certified Public Accountants.

Boyce says the IRS is taking new steps this year to prevent tax fraud, including monitoring the Internet "IP" address where multiple returns are filed and keeping a close eye on how quickly the return is filled out online.

"When somebody files a fraudulent return, the preparation of the return is done very, very quickly," she says. "As compared to an individual that's filing their return; they may have to stop to dig up information or go get paperwork."

Boyce says the IRS also is offering an extra layer of protection in the form of a personal pin number for any taxpayer that has been the victim of identity theft.

"They will provide you with an IP pin number," says Boyce. "But you have to have had an incident where you think you are the victim of straight identity theft first."

Past victims of tax fraud will get the pin number automatically. Recent victims of other types of identity theft must apply for the pin using IRS Form 4535. These application must be sent via U.S. Mail.

There's more on the web at aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork

Mike Clifford, Public News Service - NH