IRS phone scam: You owe back taxes

Bogus audits latest theme in tax phone scams

By Mike Holfeld - Investigative Reporter

ORLANDO, Fla. - When the telephone rings this tax season, remember the tax man isn't calling, even if the recorded voice claims to be someone with the Internal Revenue Service.

Treasury inspector Russell George said anytime there is a “threat of legal action” to pay up,or else, “That is a sign that the IRS is not calling.”

According to TIGTA (Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration), staffers have confirmed 5,500 hundred victims who have paid a stunning $29 million to tax collection impostors since 2013.

Connie Bolen, a long-time central Florida resident, received calls from an IRS impostor claiming an audit showed she owed back taxes and would face legal action if she didn’t take care of the issue right away.

“I’m retired and I draw on social security. That’s the only income I have, I don’t have to file income taxes,” she said.

Bolen told News 6 she received four calls on her cell phone, all from the same number and 206-area code.
The recording was identical each time, and when her brother called them back, a man answered the phone saying he was from the IRS.

When Tim Bolen asked “This isn’t really the IRS, is it?” the man on the other end hung up.

“I just want them to stop it,” Connie Bolin told News 6. “ I want people to know when they get calls like this, don’t do it, don’t give them any money, don’t call them, don’t answer them.”

The IRS posted this information for anyone receiving an IRS robo call:

  • If you owe federal taxes, or think you might owe taxes, hang up and call theIRS at 800-829-1040. IRS workers can help you with your payment questions.
  • If you do not owe taxes, fill out the “IRS Impersonation scam” form on TIGTA’s website, www.tigta.gov, or call TIGTA at 800-366-4484.
  • You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at www.FTC.gov. Add “IRS Telephone Scam” to the comments in your complaint

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