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Internal Revenue Service says tax refund scams still rampant

When it comes to tax fraud, the month of April is when many scams are uncovered. As a result, this often leads to arrests from one side of the country to the next. Unfortunately, some tax fraud scams are almost impossible to stop, which breeds more people taking advantage of the government, despite the fact that they know it is illegal.

According to a government report released late last year, the Internal Revenue Service issued approximately $4 billion in fraudulent tax refunds during the prior year to people who used other people's information to file a return. This type of scam is carried out by a number of people, ranging from identity brokers to individuals who are in a bad financial position and desperate for money.

Recently, hundreds of UPMC employees' personal information was accessed and used to file fraudulent tax returns. Although a federal investigation is ongoing, this does not change the fact that many workers have already been impacted.

During the fiscal year 2013, the IRS opened roughly 1,500 criminal cases in relation to identify theft. This is a 66 percent increase when compared to 2012. According to an Federal Bureau of Investigation supervisory special agent, "Based on the parameters that are in place now, it's very difficult to stop."

It is difficult to imagine that there is a tax fraud scam that is almost impossible to stop, but for the time being this one is bringing forth many challenges. There are many people out there who are in a poor financial situation, and for one reason or another, they make a decision, such as to commit fraud, that is unlike them. If they are facing criminal charges, the advice of an experienced, knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer can be beneficial, as these professionals work diligently to make sure that their clients' rights are protected.

Source: Pittsburgh Tribune Review, "Tax refund scam nearly impossible to stop" No author given, Apr. 10, 2014

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