IRS warns about tax refund scams

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DENVER -- The IRS has issued a warning about new scams this tax season.

One involves the American Opportunity Tax Credit, which is available to college students or parents paying tuition.

The IRS says con artists will charge lots of money up front to file a return, promising big money back from the credit, even if the person does not really qualify.

“If you don’t think you qualify for something and they are telling you that you do, you should probably think twice,” said Megan Miller with the Denver Better Business Bureau.

The IRS has already stopped thousands of these bogus refund claims in recent weeks.  Free money may sound good in tough times, but when the claim is denied, the clients are out the cash they paid the preparer.

Remember each person is responsible for the accuracy of their own return, no matter who prepared it.

The BBB says there are also phishing scams out there.

Some bogus emails are going around targeting people who use tax software like Turbo Tax or H and R Block.

This can be confusing because some tax preparers will send legitimate emails that update the status of your return.

But these phishing emails will ask for personal or financial information, and you should not fall for it. “They are trying to just fish for that private information and probably just steal your identity, or take your money,” Miller said.