CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - With only four weeks left until the April 18 tax filing deadline, hundreds of tax scams have been reported to the Ohio Attorney General's Office.
According to Attorney General Mike DeWine, more than 150 tax scams have been reported in March. That compares to 80 in January and 175 in February.
The most common scam being reported this year is the IRS imposter, according to the Ohio Attorney General's Office. Those types of calls typically involve the caller claiming that the recipient is in trouble by the IRS and they must pay or make a phone call to avoid arrest.
Attorney General DeWine said, "What we want people to remember is that if callers are threatening you, saying you have to pay immediately, or saying they're going to put you in jail, it's not the IRS."
A scammers threat may include trying to convince people that they owe back taxes, have not filed returns, or they have a final notice from the IRS. The scammers may also ask for people to pay the fines by some sort of a gift card so they can instruct people to read the card numbers over the phone.
To avoid phone scams, the Ohio Attorney General's Office warns:
- Don't trust threatening callers.
- Avoid making payments over the phone.
- Don't respond to illegal robocalls.
- Don't rely on caller ID.
- Check into call-blocking options.
- Be aware of tax-related identity theft.
Not only should individuals be cautious, but the Ohio Attorney General's Office says employers should also be aware of scams.
Any potential tax scams can be reported directly to the Ohio Attorney General's Office.