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  • Kimberly Stone

How to Request Copies of Fraudulent Tax Returns

Along with tax time comes the season of tax identity theft. Those who have been the victim of tax thieves know how frustrating the experience can be. Wouldn't it be beneficial to receive information from the IRS about the fraud attempt?

Those who have been targeted with this type of theft will be glad to know that you are now able to request copies of what thieves attempted to do with your tax information. The request must be made by a person whose name and SSN are listed as the primary or secondary taxpayer.

Some information may be redacted or partially redacted, but hopefully it will allow you to determine the depth of the data that has been stolen.

You can see what personal information the thieves have. What has been compromised? Name, address, and Social Security Number? Do they have your dependent’s or spouse's information? Perhaps they also have your income and withholding data. Knowing this will help you plan the extent of data protection you will need.

There may be clues as to where the identity theft occurred. Of the information stolen, who had access to it? Did the data breach of your identity happen through the IRS or somewhere else?

There may be more tax years impacted than you thought. Request information from the year you first became aware of the identity theft at the IRS. But you may wish to request information in a prior year and in the year following the theft. The IRS has access to up to six years of tax returns. Try to determine whether the theft is ongoing or a one-time occurrence.

Here's a link to the IRS announcement: Instructions for Requesting Copy of Fraudulent Returns.

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