New report: Protect yourself from tax fraud
A recent study by the National Consumer Law Center finds that some tax preparers are behaving badly. All these examples were dug up from real criminal cases last year: They are stealing your identity, filing secret returns with the IRS, and reporting bogus children within the returns.
The National Consumer Law Center found that in most states there are no competency requirements that govern tax preparers. In fact, they found that in 46 states there were more regulatory requirements for hair dressers. That is a big reason why many mistakes, and blatant fraud make the rounds at this time of year. And it gets worse, in most states you, the tax payer are the one who could face fines or even criminal action if you sign off on anything fraudulent. experts say stay away from any tax preparer who charges a fee based on the size of your refund check.
Another red flag; if a tax preparer asks for your refund to be deposited into their account instead of yours and never sign a blank tax return before your preparer has finished your taxes. Lastly, remember if something sounds too good to be true it probably is.