Identity Thieves Steal Tax Refunds

By: Meghan Dwyer Email
By: Meghan Dwyer Email

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Imagine you try to file your taxes and the IRS won't let you because someone else has already used your social security number.

Morgan Hanneman tried to electronically file her federal taxes last week, but the computer wouldn't let her. It said someone else had used her social security number to file three days earlier.

When she tried to contact the IRS and explain the situation they wouldn't tell her anything--not even if her three-year-old son had been claimed as a dependent. She doesn't know how someone got her information, but she had to cancel all of her credit cards just in case and freeze her accounts. She has spent hours on the phone trying to sort things out, but hasn't gotten any answers.

Hanneman said, "When you e-file you have to have your PIN number or your last year's gross income, adjusted gross income, someone had to of had that to file my taxes."

Morgan was expecting nearly $5000 back; she planned to use that money to pay for her upcoming wedding in May. The IRS won't tell her how long it could be before everything gets sorted out.

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  • by Jodi Location: Belvidere on Mar 1, 2012 at 08:42 AM
    We e-filed our taxes on 2/6/12 and were told that someone already filed using my social security number. I had to fill out the IRS's affidavit and provide a copy of my social security card and my driver's license and mail in my return. They told me if I didn't hear anything in 90 days to call them. I'm not looking forward to the waiting game.
  • by Tom Location: stillman valley on Jan 31, 2012 at 03:14 PM
    someone used my ssn on jan 20th ..irs now says we have to wait 90 days to be investigated before we get our taxes
  • by Tara Location: STILLMAN VALLEY on Jan 31, 2012 at 08:30 AM
    • reply
      by Kristy on Feb 12, 2012 at 11:43 AM in reply to Tara
      We had to mail our return in and what happened was it went to the examination department along with the fraudulent return. We were having to call every month because we were not hearing anything from them. They received our return in February and it wasn't until October that we received our refund. Their excuse for the delay was that examination just hadn't had time to review the two returns and make a determination. We sent a letter, copies of our birth certificates, copies of our IDs, our marriage certificate and more with our return and I thought this would more than prove we were who we said we were, but the problem was they just didn't have time to look at it. As I said before, we were only able to get our return because we had a financial need and contacted the taxpayer advocate service. If we had not had this need and not contaced them I am sure we would still be waiting for our refund. The IRS told us that is was not uncommon for these things to take over a year to resolve because they were so busy.
  • by Karin Location: Rockford on Jan 30, 2012 at 08:24 PM
    This story needed alot more research before it aired. The title "Identity Thieves Steal Tax Returns" is an assumption that will cause unnecessary fear for the viewers/readers. More than likely the social security number in question belonged to the child and someone else took that child as a dependent. A trip to the local IRS office may be more helpful than a phone call.
  • by Kristy Location: Rockford on Jan 30, 2012 at 05:44 PM
    Happened to my husband and I last year. We went back and forth with the IRS and finally dealt with the Taxpayer Advocate Service and in October we were able to get the refund that was owed to us. We also filed a police report with the Rockford Police Department because the address the theif used was a local one. Unfortunately we never EVER heard from a detective from police department that we were promised we would. We left many messages with the department and to this day we have not received any correspondence from the police department. What a nightmare!!
    • reply
      by Tara on Jan 31, 2012 at 03:18 PM in reply to Kristy
      @ kristy they told me april...what did they tell you last yr?? wht happen with ur identity?? did they use your ssn ...that is wht happen to us...
  • by David Location: Loves Park on Jan 30, 2012 at 03:52 PM
    The same thing happened to me last year 2011 when I had tried to claim my father taxes after he had past on. I had filed his taxes in april but when I hadn't received his return I'd spent hours on the line before they told me that they sent the return in feburey. I had planned on paying the rest of the funural cost with the return.
  • by Rockford Voter Location: Rockford on Jan 30, 2012 at 03:27 PM
    I have prepared taxes for years and have always done my own taxes. My advice? Fill in the forms by hand, copy them and use the regular mail to file. It may seem old fashioned to do them this way, but the internet is not the place to put your personal information.
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