Post Content

scam

The IRS is warning of a new spin on a common scam that is being reported across the country. The scam is linked to the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS – an automated system for paying federal taxes electronically using Internet or phone).

Scammers claiming to be from the IRS are calling consumers, telling them certified letters sent to the taxpayer in the mail were returned as undeliverable. The scammer threatens arrest if payment is not made through a prepaid debit card and claims that the card is linked to the EFTPS, which is false. The scammer also warns the victim not to contact their tax preparer, attorney, or local IRS officer until the payment is made.

The IRS offers the following advice for taxpayers who receive a call about unpaid taxes:

    • Call to demand immediate payment using payment methods such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer. All tax payments should only be made payable to the U.S. Treasury and checks should never be made payable to third parties.
    • Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have the taxpayer arrested for not paying.
    • Demand that taxes be paid without giving the taxpayer the opportunity to question or appeal the amount owed.
    • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  • EFTPS is offered free by the U.S. Department of Treasury and does not require the purchase of a prepaid debit card. It’s also an automated system so a “live” person wouldn’t call you.
  • There’s no requirement for using the EFTPS to pay real estate tax bills. Consumers have several options. Learn more about them here.
  • If you don’t owe taxes, or have no reason to think you do, simply hang up and report the call. Contact the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration to report the call. Use their IRS Impersonation Scam Reportingweb page. Report it to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the FTC Complaint Assistant on FTC.gov.
  • If you think you may owe taxes, it’s best to call the IRS yourself. They will help determine if taxes are owed and can assist you in making a payment plan.

The IRS does not use email, text messages or social media to discuss personal tax issues, such as those involving bills or refunds. For more information, visit the “Tax Scams and Consumer Alerts” page on IRS.gov.

If you have additional questions, contact the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation by calling our Consumer Hotline at (617) 973-8787, or toll-free in MA at (888) 283-3757, Monday through Friday, from 9 am-4:30 pm. Follow the Office on Facebook and Twitter, @Mass_Consumer. The Baker-Polito Administration’s Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation along with its five agencies work together to achieve two goals: to protect and empower consumers through advocacy and education, and to ensure a fair playing field for Massachusetts businesses. The Office also oversees the state’s Lemon Laws, data breach reporting, Home Improvement Contractor Programs and the state’s Do Not Call Registry.

 

Written By:

Recent Posts

Summer Safety Tips posted on Jun 18

Summer Safety Tips

As summer approaches, expect to see more people out and about using various methods of transportation.  Residents might opt to bike or walk to work and families will be packing up the car and hitting the roads for vacations. Whether you are travelling by car,   …Continue Reading Summer Safety Tips

Please read the following notice carefully as our addresses are changing! posted on Jun 14

The HIC Registrations and Renewals office will be moving to 1000 Washington St., Suite 710 on Friday, June 29. Walk-in registration/renewal will still take place at One Ashburton Place, Suite 1301 through June 28. Forms and applications should be mailed to the old address until   …Continue Reading Please read the following notice carefully as our addresses are changing!

Returning a rental car posted on Jun 12

Returning a rental car

Renting a car is common for business travelers and families on vacation. You can be in a car minutes after your flight has landed and when it’s time to return home, you just drop the car off and take a convenient shuttle to your terminal.   …Continue Reading Returning a rental car