CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Channel 9’s Action 9 team uncovered several reports of thieves stealing information and filing taxes before people even have a chance to.
Action 9 investigator Jason Stoogenkee took those examples to experts, and found out what you should do to protect yourself.
If you have all of your paperwork go ahead and file early and beat thieves to the punch.
Financial adviser Paul Durso said file as soon as you can but that may be harder this year because the government delayed how soon taxes can be filed.
“One of the biggest mistakes people do when they file their taxes, they wait too long and somebody takes your Social Security number, they get your name they fudge the rest,” Durso said.
“They file for you. All of a sudden, you file and your tax return had already gone out the door."
He added, “You want to be proactive.”
Police said they are already seeing tax theft cases this year.
For instance, someone used the victim's name, date of birth and Social Security number to file taxes back in 2011.
In another report, the victim said someone used her social security number to file taxes in Texas.
So file early and protect your information.
If someone targets you in tax fraud, contact the police and the Internal Revenue Service.
If you've been ripped off, overbilled or misled; or if you see something that is hurting all consumers, contact Action 9.