IRS Flags Over 1 Million Tax Returns For Review Citing Possible Identity Theft

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by Tyler Durden
Friday, May 19, 2023 - 11:20 AM

Authored by Savannah Hulsey Pointer via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has flagged over 1 million 2022 tax returns for additional review over potential identity fraud, according to a recent report.

The Internal Revenue Service headquarters building in Washington is seen in a file photo. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration’s interim results (pdf) of the 2023 filing season, which they released on May 10, cited 1.1 million identified as of March 2 that warranted a closer look.

The IRS stated that thus far, they have confirmed that 12,617 of the tax returns were fraudulent, and they prevented the distribution of refunds totaling $105.3 million.

During the last tax year, the IRS only identified 9,626 as confirmed fraudulent returns, with the 2023 filing period already seeing a jump of roughly 3,000 illegal returns.

According to the study, the agency would employ 236 different filters during the tax filing season of 2023, which is an increase from the 168 filters that were used during the tax filing season of 2022.

The Treasury Inspector General’s office went on to explain that the filters consist of reported income and withholding amounts, filing requirements, age, filing history, and prison status. These characteristics are derived from tax returns that have been shown to be false.

If a tax return is flagged by an agency filter, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will not process it until the taxpayer’s identification has been verified.

The IRS anticipates to collect 167 million individual income tax returns in the year 2023. As of March 3, 2023, the IRS had received 54.9 million tax returns, of which 53.6 million (or 97.5 percent) were filed online and the IRS has distributed $127.3 billion in tax money.

According to recent expert testimony before the Senate, the IRS’s increased enforcement activities are likely to impact small and midsize businesses.

Chris Edwards of the CATO Institute testified before the Senate Finance Committee on May 16, explaining that the Biden administration’s promise that there won’t be more tax audits for companies and families making less than $400,000 per year applies to “total positive” income, which means that there are no losses.

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