WATCH OUT FOR SCAMS RELATED TO COVID-19

The IRS repeatedly warns taxpayers, businesses and tax professionals to be alert for fake emails, text messages, websites and social media attempts to steal vital personal information. The Coronavirus, or COVID-19, pandemic creates a dangerous environment for these types of scams on vulnerable people in need, especially seniors. IR Notice 2020-64.

Economic Impact Payments.  The IRS will shortly issue $1,200 per person payments to individuals by direct deposit to his or her bank account of record – otherwise, to the last known address. No action is needed to receive the payment. Seniors should be especially careful. Social security recipients will receive their payments automatically. No one from the IRS will be reaching out to them to collect any type of personal information.

These payments are officially called “economic impact payments.” The words “Stimulus Check” or “Stimulus Payment” will not be used in any government communications. Be suspicious of correspondence using those terms.

You should not engage potential scammers on line or on the phone. Unsolicited messages that claim to be from the IRS or a related organization can be reported to the IRS at phishing@irs.gov. For more information about dealing with suspected scams, see the Report Phishing and Online Scams page at IRS.gov.

Coronavirus Tax Relief. The IRS has created the Coronavirus Tax Relief page on its website, IRS.gov. The page contains official information about the COVID-19 pandemic and economic impact payments. The page is regularly updated as new information becomes available on all federal tax-related programs established to deal with the economic fallout of the pandemic.

Steven Sulsky - Long Island Trust & Estates Lawyer - Of Counsel

Steven Sulsky is Of Counsel to our firm, and practices primarily with the Trust & Estates Group. He may be reached at ssulsky@certilmanbalin.com or at 516.296.7177.