Choose Your Tax Preparer Wisely
The IRS is urging taxpayers to choose their tax professional carefully as reports are coming in from around the country describing unscrupulous tax preparers who instruct their clients to make individual shared responsibilitypayments directly to them.
The IRS is reminding individuals who owe the payment that it should be made only with their tax return or in response to a letter from the IRS. The payment should never be made directly to an individual or return preparer. Most people don’t owe the payment at all because they have health coverage or qualify for a coverage exemption.
The IRS has received several reports of this kind of unscrupulous activity. In some cases, return preparers have told taxpayers to make the payment directly to them, even though the taxpayer had Medicaid or other health coverage and doesn’t need to make the shared responsibility payment at all. In some parts of the country, unscrupulous return preparers are targeting taxpayers with limited English proficiency and, in particular, those who primarily speak Spanish.