The Indiana Department of Revenue (DOR) is warning taxpayers to be on alert when getting phone calls claiming they have unpaid tax bills. These phone calls are often scams designed to threaten individuals with some sort of law enforcement or legal action in order to get them to send money towards bogus tax bills.
The federal government’s Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) reports that 14,700 victims have paid more than $72 million as a result of phone scams since 2013.
Customers should be aware that DOR and the IRS will never:
Call demanding immediate payment using a specific payment method, such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer. Generally, the taxpayer will receive a bill in the mail if taxes are owed.
Demand taxpayers pay taxes without the opportunity to question or appeal the amount owed. Taxpayers should also be advised of Indiana’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights, here.
Threaten to bring in local police, immigration officers or other law enforcement to have the taxpayer arrested for refusing payment.
Threaten to revoke a taxpayer’s driver’s license, business licenses or immigration status. Threats like these are common tactics scam artists use to trick victims into buying into their schemes.
Call about an unexpected refund.
If taxpayers think they are the target of a phone scam:
Do not give the caller any personal information and hang up immediately.
Call TIGTA at 800-366-4484 or report online here.
Report to DOR by email at email@example.com or by phone at 317-232-2240.
To confirm any claims made by a potential scammer, contact the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 or DOR Customer Service at 317-232-2240, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. EST.