Hundreds of Americans are victimized by tax fraud when their identity is stolen. In these cases, stolen Social Security numbers are used by thieves to collect fraudulent tax returns. Now the IRS is promising aggressive action.
449,809 reported cases of tax fraud related to stolen identity occurred in 2012. In an alarming trend, this number was 80% higher than in 2011. Arizona is no stranger to identity theft itself, some of the highest reported cases occurring in the southern state every year.
Victims of tax fraud via identity theft routinely need to wait more than six months before their complaints are resolved. It’s a complicated process that involves speaking with several different IRS representatives, creating further headache for those unfortunate tax filers.
The IRS has been bogged down with the rising number of identity theft incidents. As such, in an effort to reduce this waiting time for a resolution, the IRS is increasing staff. The hope is to balance the situation by routing identity theft initially and handling the current surplus of cases with a broader inventory of employees. It could be redeeming news for individuals who find themselves in these unique circumstances.