How the IRS might contact you looks very similar from person to person. Unfortunately, many different scams exist today that prey on unsuspecting business owners and individuals. Some scammers will try to pose as the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) contacting you about your taxes. These scam attempts can be pretty convincing.
This might leave you a bit concerned about separating legitimate IRS information from a potential scam. The following are tips to help you learn more about how the IRS might contact you.
Does the IRS USe Email to Contact You?
Email is a very common form of business and personal communication these days. Even so, you’ll want to be on alert if you receive an email that claims to be from the IRS. Generally speaking, the IRS isn’t going to use email to contact you.
If you do receive an email claiming to be from the IRS, double check that the email address ends in IRS.gov.
Look for a Letter from the IRS
Rather than email, the IRS will probably use a good old-fashioned letter to reach you. The letter will be delivered along with your regular mail by the U.S. Postal Service. A letter from the IRS is more likely to be legitimate than an email.
You’ll also want to note that the IRS will typically send a letter before calling you. There are exceptions, but it’s a good rule of thumb to bear in mind.
The IRS Won’t Use Social Media or Text
Also know that the IRS won’t try to start communication with you through social media or text messages. If you receive a private message online or get a text on your cell phone, don’t open any links that might be included.
AN IRS Agent Might Contact You in Person
It may surprise you to learn that an IRS agent might also visit you in person. According to their website, they do drop by if they need to contact someone about taxes that might be owed. The IRS agent might stop by your home or your business.
If someone does show up at your door claiming to represent the IRS, make sure you verify their identity. You will want to ask for their pocket commission or their Personal Identity Verification (PIV) Credential, which are two IRS-approved forms of identification.
Verify IRS Contact Attempts
When in doubt, it never hurts to verify whether a contact attempt from the IRS is real. The IRS website has some helpful tips about verifying whether something was actually sent by them. You’ll also find out how to forward suspicious emails to them if you suspect someone is trying to impersonate the IRS.
Navigating the irs
Determining whether the IRS is trying to contact you can be confusing with more sophisticated scams. If you’d like help navigating this, or if you’d like to discuss how we can help with your taxes, please contact us.
Information for this article was gathered from the IRS.