We knew going into this tax season that budget cuts to the Internal Revenue Service would result in less help for taxpayers and a likely increase in taxpayer fraud and errors, but today IRS Commissioner John Koskinen detailed exactly how badly things went this year. [More]
For many low-income consumers, tax time provides an opportunity to catch up on bills and get back on track financially. Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous companies out there that aim to make money of these same consumers by pointing them in the direction of high-cost tax-refund-anticipation loans. That appears to be the case for the owner of New Mexico-based H&R Block franchises and a tax-time loan company operating an alleged illegal tax-refund scheme. [More]
Since 2010, Congress has cut the budget for the IRS by around 20%, resulting in thousands of jobs being cut and millions of Americans unable to get much-needed help with their tax returns this year. This has had the effect of just making some people hate the IRS even more than they already did, but is this a case of kicking a man when he’s down? [More]
With the deadline for filing your annual tax return coming quickly, millions of Americans are putting their 1040s and other forms in the hands of largely unregulated paid tax preparers. But a new undercover report from the National Consumer Law Center finds that many of these preparers either don’t know what they’re doing or are allowing taxpayers to file false information. [More]
In the aftermath of revelations that fraudsters exploited TurboTax and had possibly filed bogus returns in many states, the Internal Revenue Service is contacting people linked to suspiciously filed returns, and asking them to verify their identity to find out if the return is real or not.
Are you expecting a tax refund this year? While making changes to how much tax you have withheld from your paychecks during the rest of the year can get you slightly larger checks all year long, most people keep things as they are and enjoy receiving a windfall at the beginning of the year. What do they do with that refund, though? [More]
The 2015 tax season has been fraught with complications, from the fraudulent use of tax returns to the “dirty dozen” scams meant to tear consumers away from their money. During a Senate Finance Committee hearing exploring ways in which consumers could better be protected from such hustles, federal investigators divulged more information about one of the most prevalent tax-time scams in recent years, saying it has now targeted 366,000 taxpayers to the tune of $15.5 million. [More]
Millions of Americans will owe the IRS anywhere from a few dollars to many thousands of dollars when they file their income tax returns, and not all of them have funds available to pay what they owe. The simple answer might be to just put that bill on your credit card, but you could end up paying a lot more than you expect. [More]
Airbnb finally gave in to San Francisco’s demands that it fork over a bunch of cash to pay back-taxes after failing to pay the city’s 14% hotel tax going back a few years. Airbnb wouldn’t say how much it had paid, but officials had said it ran into the millions of dollars.
A new lawsuit filed by the state of New York and New York City is accusing United Parcel Service of shipping more than 136 million contrabands cigarettes across the state in the last five years. Those smokes are worth a lot of tax dollars — about $5 million for NYC and $30 million for the state — and as such, the lawsuit is seeking $180 million in damages and penalties.
Days after TurboTax resumed e-filing of all state tax returns following a third-party security expert’s finding that fraudulent activity reported by state tax officials did not result from a breach of Intuit’s own systems, federal regulators announced they would take a look for themselves. [More]
If you’re an Ohio resident and you’re expecting a refund on your state taxes this spring, you might have to go online and take a personalized “quiz” in order to prove you are who you claim to be before you can get your money. [More]
Just a short time after Intuit announced on Friday that it would stop TurboTax electronic filing of all state tax returns to investigate fraudulent activity, the company announced filing would resume. [More]
Can you pay all debts, public and private with whatever legal tender you’d like, one man alleged caused such a nuisance while trying to pay a $600 property tax bill with intricately folded singles, his efforts landed him in jail.
Walmart recently announced a service that allows consumers who use certain participating tax preparers to pick up their refunds at a Walmart store. The program already has one high-profile detractor in the form of Connecticut Commissioner of Revenue Services Kevin Sullivan who says he believes the program is intended to get consumers to spend their refunds at Walmart. [More]
Let’s be honest for a moment and acknowledge that not everyone is 100% honest or accurate when filing their tax returns. There are lots of people out there who wouldn’t be shocked to hear from the IRS that they owe more or didn’t pay enough, which is why thousands of Americans have been scammed out of millions of dollars by con artists pretending to represent the IRS. [More]
Happy first day of tax season! Today is the first day that you can file your federal income tax return. Most Americans have to file a tax return, but a substantial number of people still don’t have bank accounts and conduct life in cash. Walmart wants to keep people in that situation away from check-cashing stores…and keep them in Walmart with a great big wad of cash in their wallets. [More]