The Internal Revenue Service recently released the ‘Dirty Dozen’ list of tax scams. Tax return preparer fraud makes the list, and with more than half of the nation’s taxpayers relying on someone else to prepare their tax return, it’s important to be on the lookout.
Here are some quick tips from the IRS to help avoid tax return preparer fraud:
- Ask if the preparer has an IRS Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). Paid tax return preparers are required to register with the IRS, have a PTIN and include it on tax returns.
- Ask about service fees. Avoid preparers who base fees on a percentage of their client’s refund or boast bigger refunds than their competition.
- Don’t use a tax preparer that asks clients to sign an incomplete or blank tax form. We repeat, do not sign a blank return!
- Make sure the preparer offers IRS e-file and ask to e-file the tax return. Paid preparers who do taxes for more than 10 clients generally must file electronically. It’s the safest and most accurate way to file a return.
For more IRS tips and to read the full article, click here.