The IRS has announced that it will conduct special “compliance efforts” for businesses and individuals in various communities. The purpose is to meet face-to-face with taxpayers with ongoing tax issues. These meetings will take place in areas where the Service’s resources have not been adequate to address these issues.

These visits are designed to resolve compliance issues like missing tax returns or unpaid taxes. The revenue officers will interview taxpayers to gather financial information and provide the necessary steps required for the taxpayer to be compliant. The first face-to-face meeting is almost always unannounced, but the taxpayer should have received numerous contacts by mail about the existing tax issue.

So how do you know that you are being contacted by an agent of the Internal Revenue Service and not a scammer? Before answering any questions, ask for identification. The revenue officer should provide two: each include both a serial number and photo. There should NEVER be threats or a demand for some unusual form of payment. The purpose of the visit is for the taxpayer to understand the tax issue and how it can be resolved. A number of payment options might be suggested. Any checks, however, should be payable to the U.S. Treasury, not the IRS.

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