2016 Tax Olympics: Dealing With ID Theft (Day 5)

12:00 AM Jamaal Solomon 0 Comments Category :

2016 Tax Olympics: 
Dealing With ID Theft (Day 5)

The problem of ID theft is huge and growing every year. Protecting your personal information should not be taken lightly. ID theft can happen to any one. Once you become a victim, it is a headache correcting the issue. I represented many clients that were victims. Most times, the criminal either claimed the victim as an dependent or filed a false return under the victim's social security number and name. The IRS is working hard to fight this problem but the criminals are always two steps ahead. This post will discuss three ways to dealing with being an victim of ID theft.


Start reviewing your credit reports as soon as you believe that you may be an victim of ID theft. Don't wait until you have actual proof. Most times, it is best to go with your gut feelings. You may find out that someone has opened up finanical accounts under your name or filed tax returns using your information. Contact your banks and lenders to report the possibility of ID theft. Review your bank and credit card monthly statements for fraudulent charges. Inform your tax accountant because he or she may know how to alert the IRS. The point of this action is act NOW before the damage becomes too great. You may want to even file police report.


You should request a copy of the fradulent tax return from the IRS. A victim of identity theft or a person authorized to obtain the identity theft victim’s tax information may request a redacted copy (one with some information blacked-out) of a fraudulent return that was filed and accepted by the IRS using the identity theft victim’s name and SSN. Due to federal privacy laws, the victim’s name and SSN must be listed as either the primary or secondary taxpayer on the fraudulent return; otherwise the IRS cannot disclose the return information. For this reason, the IRS cannot disclose return information to any person listed only as a dependent. You may want to contact the IRS directly or hire an tax professional to represent you. Don't be fooled by thinking only a lawyer should or can represent you. Enrolled Agents or CPAs can represent you in these situations too. If you don't know what an Enrolled Agent is then I recommend that you look it up. C'mon no excuses, Google makes basic research extremely easy. BTW....I'm an Enrolled Agent!


Request an IP PIN from the IRS. The IRS Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN) is a unique six-digit number that is assigned annually to victims of identity theft. It helps show a particular taxpayer is the rightful filer of the return. For 2016, everyone with an IP PIN must have it entered on the return. This includes primary and secondary taxpayers as well as dependents. Please be aware: some states also may have new security PINs this year. If the IRS issued you an IP PIN you must use it to file your federal tax return. This will prevent criminals from filing a tax return with your information. 

Stay tuned for tomorrow's Day 6 event: How to deal with tax uncertainty

Name: Jamaal Solomon