The middle of April means that TAX TIME is here once again. Protect Yourself From Tax Fraud. There are steps to take and prevent added pain when seeking help in filing income tax returns.
New York State Commissioner of Taxation and Finance uncovered fraud among some tax preparers, taxpayers are being urged to take some simple precautions to make certain they do not become victims of fraud.
Taxation and Finance officials recommend steps for taxpayers to ensure they are not the target of fraudulent practices:
Ask for a written estimate of all fees before hiring a tax preparer
Never sign a blank or incomplete tax return
Make sure your preparer signs the return
Have your refund deposited directly into your bank account or sent directly to you on a debit card.
The Tax Department’s “Consumer Bill of Rights Regarding Tax Preparers”— available free in several languages—includes additional information for taxpayers when hiring preparers.
Refund status: (518) 457-5149 (Automated service for refund status is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.)
Personal Income Tax Information Center: (518) 457-5181
To order forms and publications: (518) 457-5431
(TTY) Hotline (for persons with hearing
and speech disabilities using a TTY): If you have access to a TTY, contact us at (518) 485-5082. If you do not own a TTY, check with independent living centers or
community action programs to find out where machines are available for public use.
Persons with disabilities
In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, they will ensure that lobbies, offices, meeting rooms, and other facilities are accessible to persons with disabilities. If you have questions about special accommodations for persons with disabilities, call the information center.
Know your rights before you hire a tax preparer.
Most tax preparers act within the law and treat their clients fairly. But there are some who don’t.
This contains important information about how to protect yourself when you hire a tax preparer.
To file a complaint about a tax preparer:
Visit Web site at www.tax.ny.gov Call (518) 457-2721
If your preparer is located in New York City, contact the NYC Department of
Consumer Affairs by calling 311 or (212) NEW-YORK from outside NY.