Identity theft can affect taxpayers in two primary ways:
- Refund-related: This occurs when the identity thief uses the victim’s SSN to file a false federal income tax return to obtain funds. If the thief files before the victim, the victim may not receive his or her refund in a timely fashion.
- Employment-related or Income-related: This occurs when the identity thief uses the victim’s SSN to obtain employment, resulting in what may appear as unreported income under the victim’s account.
For both forms of identity theft the taxpayer must submit the following documentation to the IRS by mail or by visiting the local IRS Office.
For Refund-Related identity theft:
- A photocopy of one or more of the following:
- Social Security Card
- Driver’s License
- Other Federal or State issued identification, AND
- One of the following:
Attach the documentation referenced above to your paper return if you have not yet filed, or to a letter of explanation if you have already submitted a return. Send the information to the location where the return is filed.
For Employment-Related or Income Related identity theft issues, attach the documentation referenced above along with any notice received from the IRS, and send to:
Internal Revenue Service,
PO Box 9039,
Andover, MA 01810–0939,
OR fax to (978) 247–9965 (this is not a toll-free number).
If additional assistance is needed, contact the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit (IPSU) using the toll-free number 800-908-4490, or visit the IRS website at www.irs.gov (keyword identity theft).
To request a copy of the victim’s tax return and related refund information to assist in local jurisdiction prosecutions:
Form 8821-A Must be completed with no scratch outs, be legible, no blank spaces, and one form per tax year. We must have the original signature. If the form is incomplete or illegible in any way the form will be returned for corrections. Mail original Forms 8821-A along with a photocopy of Form 14039 to:
IRS-CI Disclosure Waiver Program
401 West Peachtree Street – Room 600
Atlanta, GA 30308
The 8821 A form (Victim’s tax return waiver) must be picked up at the Sheriff’s Office. Copies are at the front desk along with copies of the 14039 form (Identity theft Affidavit).
Action Steps for Victims:
- Make a police report with the Police Jurisdiction where you live. Provide as much documentation as possible, to include who you talked to at xyz company and their phone number, copies of statements, etc.
- Contact all your creditors, by phone and in writing (include a Universal Fraud Affidavit), and inform them of the problem. Suspects often apply for Instant Credit at businesses in your name. If you already have an account with the company he says “I forgot about that, how much credit do I have. I’ll take the Big Screen TV, Washer/ Dryer, and a new computer”.
- Contact the Federal Trade Commission to report the identity theft.
- Obtain your credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus. Attempt to get one from a local bureau in the area the fraud occurred. Report the identity theft to their fraud units. Have a “Fraud Alert/Victim Impact” statement placed in your credit file asking that creditors call you before opening any new accounts.
- Alert your bank and check verification companies to flag your accounts and to contact you to confirm unusual activity. Change your account numbers if they were compromised. Request a change of PIN’s and Passwords if they are easily guessed, or were compromised.
- Obtain your Social Security Administration (SSA) report and check for benefits paid out, or income earned in your name. Report the situation to the SSA Fraud Hotline if your SSN was misused.
- Check post office for possible change of address for you. Suspects have filed for a Change of address to have all mail concerning the fraud come to their address, or a fictitious address, so you don’t see it. This gives them more time to commit more fraud.
- Check tenant screening services for apartments rented in your name (This may also be available on your credit report).
- Contact driver license authority (Georgia Department of Driver Services); (770) 918-5822 or access the Web site: www.dds.ga.gov. Then contact the state where the loss/theft occurred to see if a license, or any traffic citations were issued in your name. If so, request a new license number and fill out the DMV’s complaint form to begin the fraud investigation process.
- Keep a log of all contacts and make copies of all documents. Ask for a fraud investigator at most companies as a point
- Contact a privacy or consumer advocacy group for assistance and resources.
Major Credit Bureaus:
To order report:
Fraud #: (800) 525-6285
To order report:
(888) 397-3742 or (800) 520-1221
Fraud #: (800) 311-4769
To order report:
Fraud #: (800) 680-7289
Stolen checks or bank accounts set up fraudulently in your name, call these check guarantee companies. They can flag your file so that counterfeit checks will be refused.
- CheckRite – (800) 766-2748
- Chexsystems – (800) 428-9623
- CrossCheck – (707) 586-0551
- Equifax – (800) 437-5120
- International Check Svcs – (800) 526-5380
- SCAN – (800) 262-2771
- TeleCheck – (800) 710-9898
NATIONAL CHECK FRAUD CENTER: (843) 571-2143 (Web site)
Consumer Advocacy Groups:
1717 Kettner Ave., Ste. 105
San Diego, CA 2101
Phone: (619) 298-3396
218 D St. S.E.
Washington, DC 20001
Phone: (202) 546-9707
If you have any questions please contact:
Sergeant Chuck Catlin