Avoid Scams This Tax Season

According to the Internal Revenue Service as many as 1.2 million Americans earn fees for preparing tax returns. Unfortunately some of them are running scams. Rod Rice reports that the Texas Attorney General's Office has some tips to avoid being a tax scam victim.

The AG's office says this is not a small problem.  Laurie Saathoff says the office gets a various complaints this time of year.

"Preparers that cause excessive fees and fail to return paperwork or just disappearing after returns are filed so the client can't ask any questions."

Saathoff says there are four steps you should take before hiring a tax preparer.

"The first one is ask for the tax preparers credentials, the second is verify that the tax preparer is a certified public accountant, also check with the Better Business Bureau for complaints against the preparer, and make sure the business is open year round in the event you have to ask follow up questions about your returns."

You should also know what the fee is upfront and the AG's office says, never respond to an e-mail that says it's from the IRS, it is not, the IRS does not contact taxpayers by e-mail.

Bio photo of Rod Rice

Rod Rice

Local Anchor, Morning Edition

Rod Rice became fascinated with radio at an early age, while sitting on his Grandfather’s lap listening to his "programs" on the big Emerson Radio...