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Seniors and Taxes – 5 Tax Scams to Watch Out For

It’s sad, but we all have to be on constant alert. I’ve written in the past about scam artists and their schemes during the Christmas holidays but, until now, have not researched other times when idiots are trying to separate you from your money or other assets. But with quarterly taxes due in about two months, I thought I might share some of the more prevalent schemes.

Maggie Fitzgerald, a news associate at CNBC, researched this subject and found that seniors in 2018 were defrauded of over 2.9 billion dollars. The number one scam was someone impersonating an IRS agent.  These fraudulent offers can, of course, come in many forms Here are five to be on the lookout for.



  • “IRS” phone callJon Chrisos, an investigative reporter for the Sinclair Broadcast Group, warns of the latest scam. Callers phone posing as a Taxpayer Advocate Service agent and try to solicit information or money.


  • Fake tax bills in the mailJulia Tell, writing for Business Insider, warns of mailings that may look legitimate, but, in reality, are looking for a social security number, credit card, or other personal information.


  • Illegal tax shelters Jeanne Sahadi, senior writer and columnist at CNN Business, warns of people selling complicated shelters to save you money … for a “small” fee.


  • Fraudulent tax preparers – The IRS warns against fraudulent tax preparers, those who advise inflating income or expenses and basing their fee as a percentage of the savings.


Anyone, not just seniors, can fall victim to a con artist. Seniors can be easy victims and need to be wary.  Know that any undertaking by the IRS is a process and never will they initially demand immediate payment or threaten with action by local or federal agents. The above five scams are just a few of those being proliferated. This abbreviated short list will, I hope, prompt you to be on the lookout for these and other con games. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you have any questions for the IRS about possible scams, hoaxes or impersonators, you can reach them at 800-829-1040.