The IRS recently released its annual list of the top 12, or DirtyDozen, tax scams.
- Phishing schemes: Fake email or websites that trick taxpayers or practitioners into giving personal information.
- Phone scams: Aggressive and threatening phone calls from criminals impersonating IRS agents.
- Identity theft.
- Unscrupulous tax return preparers.
- Fake charities: Scam artists steal money and personal information from unsuspecting (and well meaning) taxpayers.
- Falsely inflating refund claims: This scam takes may forms, including unscrupulous tax preparers contacting elderly or low-income taxpayers.
- Excessive claims for business credits: Principally fuel tax credit scams and research tax credit scams.
- Padding deductions: Falsely claiming deductions and expenses or credits.
- Falsifying income to claim tax credits: Reporting fraudulent earned income to qualify for certain tax credits, such as the EITC, which requires taxpayers to have incomed earned from a job.
- Abusive tax shelters.
- Frivolous tax arguments: Common arguments are that taxpayers can avoid paying taxes on religious or moral grounds by invoking the First Amendment to the Constitution.
- Offshoretax cheating: Hiding money or other assets in unreported offshore accounts.
The Tax Adviser
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