How can I tell if the person calling me about my tax debt is truly from the IRS?

During tax season, the IRS warns taxpayers that tax debt-related scams tend to increase. These scams can come in many different forms. Some may involve phone calls or emails from IRS impersonators demanding that you pay your unpaid tax debt. Unfortunately, this time of year is also associated with increased collection activity by legitimate IRS employees. For this reason, it is important that taxpayers not ignore communication purporting to come from the IRS. Instead, taxpayers should contact an attorney for guidance.

What the IRS Will NOT Do When it Comes to Unpaid Tax Debt

One way to tell if the person contacting you about your unpaid tax debt is truly a representative of the IRS is to be aware of the things that the IRS will not do. For example, the IRS will never do the following:

  • Call to demand immediate payment.
  • Call you about an unpaid tax debt without first having sent you a written bill.
  • Demand that you pay taxes without giving you an opportunity to question or appeal the debt.
  • Require that you use a specific payment method to pay your tax debt.
  • Request that you provide credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  • Threaten you with police action if you do not pay.

If the person contacting you engages in any of the above, chances are good that it is not a legitimate phone call or email from the IRS.

Regardless of whether the contact you receive is legitimate, ignoring your tax debt will only make your problems worse. Fortunately, we can help you resolve your tax debt and move on with your life. To learn more, we encourage you to check out our free guide, The Ultimate Guide for IRS Problems.