Watch Out for These Tax Time Scams

scam warning - blogThe onset of the tax filing period is likely to also see an increase in scams designed to steal taxpayer financial information or defraud individuals and businesses. Here are some of the scams the IRS is warning taxpayers and businesses to guard against. Continue reading

Important Tax Deadlines for 2019

tax deadlines 2019

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued a list of important tax deadlines for 2019. We have organized them below in chronological order. Remember, the IRS takes these deadlines seriously, and so should you. No adjustments have been made at this time as a result of the current partial shutdown of the federal government.

What if you miss a deadline? The IRS recommends that you file your return as soon as possible. If you owe taxes, pay them. You may face a financial penalty, or perhaps just an interest charge, but the IRS generally will accept the late return.

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Owe Federal Taxes? You Could Lose Your Passport.

Passport -shutterstock_258682454A new law enacted in January 2016, the “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act” (FAST), would seem to be a very helpful and positive step toward repairing the nation’s crumbling transportation infrastructure. Indeed, the U.S. Department of Transportation calls FAST “a down-payment for building a 21st century transportation system.”

But, as with a number of laws that have worked their way through the halls of Congress, FAST has been used as a vehicle to pass many provisions and amendments that have no direct connection with building roads and bridges. One of the lesser publicized provisions in the FAST Act authorizes the denial of a U.S. passport application or the revocation of a current passport for individuals who have more than $50,000 in unpaid federal taxes. Continue reading

How Can You Prevent Taxpayer Identity Theft?

By John W. Cashman, Jr., CPA
Tax Manager at Gray, Gray & Gray, LLP

Identity theft road signWhile it is tax season for most of us, it is Christmas for online identity thieves. With so many people transferring their personal information and financial data via mail or electronically, unscrupulous individuals are having a field day. In most cases they are targeting tax refunds, using stolen social security numbers to assume your identity and taking the money that is rightfully yours. Continue reading

Latest Online Scam Targets Banks

scam alert squareThe Internal Revenue Service (IRS) office is alerting financial institutions to be wary of fraudulent emails, ostensibly from the IRS, requesting personal financial data on account holders under the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FACTA). The emails request data such as account holder identities, account information, and confidential passwords.

The IRS says it does not request specific account holder identity information over the phone, by fax or by email, and does not solicit FACTA passwords or other confidential account information. They report that incidents of these “phishing” scams involving FACTA have occurred in multiple countries.
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Wondering When Your Tax Refund Will Arrive?

Wondering When Your Tax Refund Will Arrive?Hopefully by now you have filed your tax return, or at least filed for an extension. The IRS reports receiving nearly 113 million individual tax returns before the filing deadline.

Are you still waiting for your refund check to show up in your mailbox, or to be deposited into your bank account? Continue reading

Estate Tax Extension Simplified

Estate Tax Deadline ExtendedPart of dealing with the death of a family member is the need to file a federal (and, in many cases, state) estate tax return. Even those decedents whose total assets fall below estate and gift tax exemption thresholds are well advised to file Form 706, which must be submitted within 9 months of the date of death.

However, because many estates are tied up in probate or total assets cannot be properly assessed within a 9 month window, it is common practice for people to file for an extension using Form 4768. This extends the filing deadline an additional 6 months. Continue reading

Avoid the Storm of Typhoon Charity Scams

ScamAlertIn the wake of the Typhoon Haiyan disaster in the Phillipines, the IRS is warning consumers to be alert for unscrupulous scam artists who are taking advantage of the generous nature of the American people to fraudulently obtain money and private information. These fake solicitations may come over the phone, through e-mail or over the Internet, or in person.

You must be on high alert for these shady scam artists in order to protect your donation and safeguard your personal financial information. Continue reading

If the IRS Calls, It May Be a Scam!

Phone Scam AlertThe latest telephone scam sweeping the country has caught the attention of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) because the scammers are pretending to be IRS officials.

Victims have reported receiving a telephone call from someone identifying himself or herself as an IRS agent. In some cases a victim’s caller ID appears as if the call is coming from the IRS, and the scammer even provides a false IRS badge number. Often the scammer will know the last four digits of the victim’s Social Security number, an indication of identity theft. Continue reading

Government Shutdown Delays Start of Tax Season

Breaking NewsThe nearly two-week shutdown of the federal government will have an impact on the start of the tax season. The IRS has announced that the 2014 filing season, which was originally scheduled to begin on January 21, could be delayed by one to two weeks. This would push the earliest filing date to January 28, or as late as February 4, 2014.

A final decision on the official start date – the day the IRS will begin to accept 2013 tax returns from both businesses and individual taxpayers – will be made in December.

The delay does not affect the filing deadline, which remains April 15, 2014.
The government shutdown, which brought an estimated 90 percent of IRS operations to a standstill, came at a critical preparation time for the IRS. An estimated 1.4 million documents were either in process or were received during the shutdown period. In addition, the IRS was in the process of programming and testing systems to provide additional refund fraud and identity theft detection and prevention.

If you have any questions about filing your corporate or individual tax returns, please contact us.