MONEY Taxes

3 Tips for Trimming Your 2015 Tax Bill Now

immunization shot with dollar sign bubble in liquid
iStock Boost your immunity to taxes.

Sell before you lose the chance.

This is the third installment in Money’s Midyear Financial Checkup. You can read our first installment, on how to recalibrate your investments, here, and our second, on how to negotiate a raise this summer, here.

Rebalancing your portfolio by selling stocks makes a lot of sense after the fourth longest bull market in history. But it’s not so simple. You know that selling long-term holdings at a profit has a bad side effect: capital gains taxes.

Use losses to offset gains. When you sell a long-term holding that’s down, Uncle Sam compensates you for part of that loss. How? By letting you use those capital losses to reduce, dollar for dollar, any capital gains you have elsewhere in your portfolio. The good news: If you wind up with more losses than gains, you can use them to lower your taxable ordinary income up to $3,000 a year. Even better, you can carry forward leftover losses indefinitely, which means you can lower your tax bill for future years when you rebalance.

Sell before you lose the chance. Even though the market is modestly up this year, losses can be found in a number of areas, including European equities, emerging-market stocks, commodities, natural resource funds, and the energy sector (see chart). Investors often wait until the end of the year to harvest losers. But “if you wait until then, you might have fewer opportunities,” says Los Angeles financial adviser Ara Oghoorian. He adds: “You don’t know where the market will be in December.”

Maintain your strategy. While rebalancing reduces risk, you don’t want to change the makeup of your portfolio. So when you sell, immediately replace your losers with the same type of—but not identical—investments. The IRS’s “wash sale” rule restricts you from buying back the same security you just sold for 30 days if you want to keep the tax break. However, this still leaves you plenty of room to maneuver, says tax expert Robert Willens.

For instance, if you sell Exxon Mobil EXXONMOBIL CORPORATION XOM 0.93% , whose shares have sunk 14% in the past year because of weak oil prices, there’s nothing stopping you from swapping it for a peer like Chevron CHEVRON CORP. CVX -0.23% , which generates a greater percentage of its energy production from oil and is therefore more likely to bounce back as crude prices recover. Or you can buy a broad-based energy fund like Vanguard Energy ETF VANGUARD WORLD FDS VANGUARD ENERGY ETF VDE 0.4% , which charges just 0.12% in annual fees.

Money
MONEY Tax

More States Tax Tampons Than Candy in America

tampon-tax-more-states-candy-soda
Image Source—Getty Images/Image Source

Feminine hygiene products are taxed more often than soda too.

Forty states tax tampons and other feminine hygiene products, a new report from Fusion finds.

That’s odd given the fact that the 45 states with sales taxes typically allow exemptions for “necessities” like groceries—and, well, menstrual products are a necessity for about half the U.S. population.

Only five states with sales tax—Maryland, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Minnesota and New Jersey—have explicitly eliminated sales tax on tampons and pads, the report found.

That compares with 15 states (plus D.C.) that treat candy as sales tax-exempt groceries, according to recent data from the Tax Foundation. Eleven states don’t tax soda or candy, but 10 of those 11 do tax tampons.

The offenders?

1. Arizona
2. Georgia
3. Louisiana
4. Michigan
5. Nebraska
6. Nevada
7. New Mexico
8. South Carolina
9. Vermont
10. Wyoming

And it’s not just about candy and soda: Plenty of states tax feminine hygiene products but allow exemptions for much more seemingly frivolous purchases.

New York, for example, taxes tampons but apparently not dry cleaning, newspapers, American flags, admissions to live circus performances, or “wine furnished at a wine tasting.”

Perhaps we should take a cue from our northern neighbors: Canada’s government just announced that it will stop taxing feminine hygiene products this summer.

 

TIME Taxes

Burning Man Is Getting Taxed for the First Time Ever

A man poses at Black Rock City's Burning Man festi
Hector Mata—AFP/Getty Images A man poses at Black Rock City's Burning Man festival in Black Rock City, Nevada 03 September, 1999.

Nevada lawmakers shut down a loophole

Heads up, Burning Man fans: Your tickets to the annual out-of-this-world desert shindig might be about to get more expensive.

Lawmakers eliminated loopholes in Nevada’s live entertainment tax, which previously allowed festivals like Burning Man escape any government-mandated fees, Bloomberg reports. The tax was originally targeted at cabaret performances and burlesque dancing.

A 9% charge will now be added on tickets for festivals like Burning Man and the Electric Daisy Carnival, which both cost about $400 a pop. The tax will also apply to “pickup fees” for escort services, though prostitutes at Nevada’s 24 legal brothels don’t fall under this new levy group.

“There’s no better venue in the world than Southern Nevada to conduct an event like Electric Daisy Carnival and there’s no better place than the desert of Northern Nevada for an event like Burning Man,” State Senator Mark Lipparelli, a Las Vegas Republican who sponsored the bill, told Bloomberg. “We like them as businesses and we want them to keep coming here. We also want to improve education in Nevada.”

The live entertainment tax was expected to generate about 4.3% of the state’s $6.3 billion two-year budget covering 2015 to 2017 before this change. Analysts haven’t run numbers on the yield expected from the updated version, but expect it will be similar.

Festival promoters for Burning Man — which attracts many of the tech elite every year — and Electric Daisy Carnival weren’t happy about the new fees. Spokespeople for the two events called it “short-sighted” and “detrimental to our industry,” pointing out that the fetes generate huge sums for Nevada’s economy every year.

MONEY Taxes

Start Saving on Your 2015 Taxes Now

contributing to charity box
Jeffrey Coolidge—Getty Images

It's never too early to get a leg up on Uncle Sam.

Though the ink’s barely dry on your return for 2014, getting an early start on tax planning for 2015 can save you both money and stress next April. Here are five techniques to keep in mind.

1. Tax-loss harvesting. If you already realized a large capital gains tax in 2015 or anticipate one later this year, this tactic might help. Loss harvesting involves selling an investment at a loss and simultaneously buying a similar, substitute investment.

Let’s assume that you purchased $10,000 worth of oil company ABC stock last year. Due to lower oil prices, your investment drops in value to $7,000. If you take no action and oil prices rebound, raising the stock price, you receive no tax benefit for the temporary $3,000 loss from your stock.

If you sell your ABC stock and buy a substitute simultaneously (say, in oil company XYZ), you can use the $3,000 to offset gains on your tax return and participate in the stock price recovery that accompanies eventually rising oil prices.

You can use this strategy with individual securities (stocks) or with diversified bundles of securities, such as mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. Either way, you can lower your capital gains liability and possibly achieve greater after-tax returns.

2. Optimized charitable giving. Increasing your donations in the year that you realize a large capital gain can also help reduce your tax liability.

If you don’t have a favorite charity and need time to research qualified organizations before making a contribution, consider creating a donor-advised fund (DAF) to take a tax deduction in the year that you make the contribution (in this case, 2015) and make grants to your favorite charities in the future.

Funds in a DAF can be invested to grow over time. You can also contribute to DAFs with appreciated securities that are now worth more than when you bought them, giving you two tax breaks: on the charitable contribution and on the unrealized capital gain in the investments.

You can even create a board of advisors for your DAF to get other members of your family involved in grant decisions.

3. Higher retirement plan contributions. For 2015, your maximum deferral to defined contribution plans (to which you kick in a set fraction of your pay) increased to $18,000, and the catch-up contribution for those 50 and older increased to $6,000 — a total of $24,000 in potential tax deferrals.

Consider increasing your contributions to match these limits, which can also reduce your taxable income. Contact your plan administrator for more information.

4. A Roth individual retirement account conversion. Such switches from an existing IRA or employer-sponsored plan were once only available to investors with modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) of less than $100,000. Congress eliminated that restriction in 2010, making Roth IRA conversions available to nearly all investors regardless of marital status or income level.

You can benefit from a Roth IRA conversion if you expect your taxable income to be significantly lower or your deductions to be significantly higher in 2015, or if you’re in a lower tax bracket now than your expected retirement tax bracket.

Best to be proactive: Ask your tax advisor to prepare a projection regarding your optimal amount to convert before December. If necessary, you also have until Oct. 15, 2016, to re-characterize your Roth IRA back into a traditional IRA.

5. Maximized company stock options. If you’re in an employer-sponsored stock option plan, start tax planning before the year in which the options mature to retain the most flexibility and savings.

If your options mature or start vesting in 2015, meet with your financial advisor to prepare tax projections. Planning ahead helps you get ready to take advantage of future tax savings as well as regulate your cash flow.

Integrating tax planning with your investment management optimizes your after-tax returns and enhances your whole financial plan, both in this year and in those to come.

Lora Murphy, CPA, CFP, CDFA, is a consultant with Wipfli Hewins Investment Advisors LLC in Milwaukee.

More From AdviceIQ:

MONEY ID Theft

IRS Will Now Provide Copies of Fraudulent Returns to Victims

copying machine
Sunil Menon—Getty Images

Now you can learn what scammers know.

The Internal Revenue Service will now provide identity theft victims with copies of fraudulent tax returns filed in their name.

The agency agreed to change its policy after New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte wrote to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen urging the agency to provide victims with copies of bogus returns filed in their names so that they could better understand the extent of the ID theft. The agency had previously refused to release the fraudulent returns for privacy reasons.

Instead, victims were notified only that their personal information had been used to file false returns. That left some taxpayers curious about the amount of personal and financial details scammers might know about them.

In his reply to Ayotte, Commissioner Koskinen wrote that the IRS “will put together a procedure that will enable victims to receive, upon request, redacted copies of fraudulent returns filed in their name and SSN.” (The returns will be redacted because a single tax return could contain multiple Social Security numbers, thus possibly compromising another person’s security.)

If your information was used to file a false return, follow our guide to getting your identity and refund money back.

 

 

 

 

MONEY college savings

The Earnings on Your 529 College Savings Account Stink. Here’s Why That’s OK

dollar bill shoved in pile of books
Mudretsov Oleksandr—iStock

It's not all bad news.

The average investor in a college savings plan made just about 4% last year, even though the total U.S. stock market rose by almost 14%, a new study from Morningstar found.

But the lead author of the report, Leo Acheson, says that performance may not be quite as depressing as it sounds, for these six reasons:

  • It still beats tuition: Although 4% severely lags the Standard & Poor’s 500, it beat tuition inflation, which rose by 3.7% in 2014, according to the College Board.
  • Older students should earn less: A disproportionately large percentage of all 529 assets are funds that have been saved over time for students who are now at or nearing college age. Funds for those students should be—and typically are—invested very conservatively. Savings plans designed for current college students, for example, are typically almost entirely in safe bonds, which means they are earning less than 2% a year right now, Acheson notes.
  • Diversification setbacks should be short-term: Younger and more aggressive investors whose portfolios were globally diversified also earned less than the Standard & Poor’s 500 in 2014 because of trouble in international markets. Overall, emerging markets funds lost about 5% in 2014, for example. But, in theory, at least, globally diversified portfolios should do better over the long run.
  • Savers get federal tax benefits: When parents take the money out of 529 accounts to pay college bills, they don’t have to pay taxes on the gains, which boosts their effective return. Morningstar estimated that a family in the 25% to 35% tax bracket that saved $2,400 annually over the last five years would have netted $15,275 after taxes in a typical mutual fund, but $15,628 after taxes from the same investment in a sheltered 529 account.
  • Some also get state tax benefits: About half of Americans live in one of the 34 states that give deductions or credits on state tax returns for contributions to 529 plans. Those initial tax breaks reduce families’ state tax bills by an average of 8.7% of the contribution, according to Morningstar. (See if you live in a state with a 529 tax break.)
  • Fees are shrinking: One of the biggest criticisms of 529 plans has been the high fees that eat away at parents’ investment returns. Morningstar found that, for example, large value index funds offered in 529 plans charge expense ratios of .78% of assets, while the equivalent mutual fund outside of 529 plans charges just .56%. But 40 plans cut their fees in 2014, bringing the average gap between mutual funds and similar 529 plans down by more than half, Acheson found. In addition, the best plans, recommended by MONEY and by Morningstar, have fees as low as .08%.

The bottom line of all of these developments, Acheson says, is that for families in moderate to high tax brackets, and those who live in a state with a 529 tax break, “it makes sense to save for college in a 529 plan…especially one with low fees.”

MONEY college savings

Six Misconceptions That Are Costing You Free Money for College

college students listening to professor in lecture hall
Getty Images

In honor of 5/29 College Savings Day, MONEY answers parents' most common questions and concerns about 529 accounts.

Despite being promoted for more than a decade as the best way to save for college, 529 plans are a mystery to almost two-thirds of American families. Which means they’re losing out on what is essentially free money for college.

Part of the problem, of course, is that many Americans feel they don’t have any extra money to save for any reason, college included, one recent survey found.

But today—5/29 (get it?)—is a great day to take a closer look at how these college savings plans work. For one thing, so-called “529 Day” comes with cash bonuses. Many hospitals, for example, will give babies born on this day $529 toward college savings. The state of California will kick in $50 in matching contributions made to its 529 accounts today. And Virginia is giving anyone who opens a new college savings account this month a chance to win $10,000.

These short-term promotions are designed to draw attention to the more permanent advantages of the 529 plan. Thirty-four states offer state tax breaks or scholarships to residents who invest in college savings accounts that add, on average, the equivalent of 8.7% to your contributions. And earnings on any 529 investment can be used tax-free to pay for your child’s college expenses, which boosts the net value of your college savings over what you would earn in a regular investment account.

Unfortunately, many parents who can afford to save don’t do so, often because they have misconceptions about the costs and benefits of 529 plans. Here’s the truth behind six of the most common false assumptions that experts say they hear.

It will impact financial aid. Some parents who have saved for college fear that their nest egg could turn into a financial hand grenade when their student applies for financial aid, says Lynn O’Shaughnessy, author of The College Solution. And, in fact, every $1,000 you’ve saved in a college savings account can reduce need-based aid offers by up to $56. But many families don’t see that much of a reduction. And even those who do are still wealthier and far more able to pay for college than they would have been without saving, O’Shaughnessy says.

I can’t afford the contribution minimums: A lot of families get paralyzed by the idea that they can’t put a large sum aside, and so they don’t save anything at all, says Betty Lochner, Director of the Guaranteed Education Tuition plan in the state of Washington. “They think it’s too steep a hill to climb, and it’s not,” she says. At least 33 states allow you to open accounts with deposits of $25 or less, according to the College Savings Plans Network’s tool to compare plans.

The investments are too risky. Many parents are naturally afraid to put money in investments they don’t understand or trust. But most states offer low-cost, professionally managed plans specifically designed for parents who don’t want to have to worry about the ups and downs of the market, says Joe Hurley, an expert on 529 plans and founder of Savingforcollege.com. For example, the increasingly popular age-based portfolios, many of which are managed by well-respected firms such as Vanguard, Fidelity, or T. Rowe Price, will manage the risk of stock markets by moving money to more conservative portfolios as students get closer to college age.

There are also several independent guides to help you pick a good plan. Savingforcollege.com compiles a quarterly list of the top performing plans, and Morningstar publishes an annual research analysis.

It limits college choices: Although most 529 plans are sponsored by a state, the funds can be used at any accredited college in any state, says Lochner, who is also chairwoman of the College Savings Plans Network, a consortium of state plan administrators.

But my kid’s going to get a full ride! Time for a reality check: The idea that bright students can easily earn full-ride scholarships is a myth, says O’Shaughnessy. Only .3% — that’s less than one third of 1% — of college students receive true full rides, according to research by Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of Edvisors and author of “Secrets to Winning a Scholarship.” Even if your child gets a scholarship to cover tuition, there’s still room and board and books to pay for, both of which qualify as educational expenses for 529 accounts. (Congress is considering a proposal that would expand what qualifies to include computers, software, and internet access.)

Any additional money left over in a 529 can be easily transferred to a college savings account for yourself, or for a sibling, cousin, or future grandchild. Alternatively, you can withdraw 529 money from an account and spend it on anything you want—you’ll just have to pay taxes on the gains (as you would have done for funds from a regular investment account), and there will be a 10% additional tax penalty on those gains. If you are spending money left over in a 529 because your child won scholarships, however, the tax penalty is waived, Lochner says.

My kid will blow the money on video games. Having a nightmare about your daughter going through a rebellious teenage phase and cashing out the college savings plan to finance a backpacking trip across Europe? Not going to happen. Parents remain in control of the account even after a child turns 18.

To learn more about 529 plans and get help figuring out which 529 plan is right for you, check out MONEY’s guide.

MONEY Ask the Expert

Why a High Income Can Make It Harder to Save for Retirement

Ask the Expert Retirement illustration
Robert A. Di Ieso, Jr.

Q: My employer’s 401(k) plan considers me a “highly compensated” employee and caps my contribution at a measly 5%. I know I am not saving enough for retirement. What are the best options to maximize my retirement savings? I earn $135,000 a year and my wife makes $53,000. – E.O., Long Island, NY

A: It’s great to have a six-figure income. But, ironically, under IRS rules, being a highly compensated worker can make it harder to save in your 401(k).

First, some background on what it means to be highly compensated. The general rule is that workers can put away $18,000 a year in pre-tax income in a 401(k) plan. But if you earn more than $120,000 a year, or own more than a 5% stake in your employer’s company, or are in the top 20% of earners at your firm, you are considered a “highly compensated employee” (HCE) by the IRS.

As an HCE, you’re in a different category. Uncle Sam doesn’t want the tax breaks offered by 401(k)s only to be enjoyed by top executives. So your contributions can be limited if not enough lower-paid workers contribute to the plan. The IRS conducts annual “non-discrimination” tests to make sure high earners aren’t contributing disproportionately more. In your case, it means you can put away only about $6,000 into your plan.

Granted, $120,000, or $135,00, is far from a CEO-level salary these days. And if you live in a high-cost area like New York City, your income is probably stretched. Being limited by your 401(k) only makes it more difficult to build financial security.

There are ways around your company’s plan limits, though neither is easy or, frankly, realistic, says Craig Eissler, a certified financial planner with Halbert Hargrove in Houston. Your company could set up what it known as a safe harbor plan, which would allow them to sidestep the IRS rules, but that would mean getting your employer to kick in more money for contributions. Or you could lobby your lower-paid co-workers to contribute more to the plan, which would allow higher-paid employees to save more too. Not too likely.

Better to focus on other options for pumping up your retirement savings, says Eissler. For starters, the highly compensated limits don’t apply to catch-up contributions, so if you are over 50, you can put another $6,000 a year in your 401(k). Also, if your wife is eligible for a 401(k) or other retirement savings plan through her employer, she should max it out. If she doesn’t have a 401(k), she can contribute to a deductible IRA and get a tax break—for 2015, she can contribute as much as $5,500, or $6,500 if she is over 50.

You can also contribute to an IRA, though you don’t qualify for a full tax deduction. That’s because you have a 401(k) and a combined income of $188,000. Couples who have more than $118,000 a year in modified adjusted gross income and at least one spouse with an employer retirement plan aren’t eligible for the tax break.

Instead, consider opting for a Roth IRA, says Eissler. In a Roth, you contribute after-tax dollars, but your money will grow tax-free; withdrawals will also be tax-free if the money is kept invested for five years (withdrawals of contributions are always tax-free). Unfortunately, you bump up against the income limits for contributing to a Roth. If you earn more than $183,000 as a married couple, you can’t contribute the entire $5,500. Your eligibility for how much you can contribute phases out up to $193,000, so you can make a partial contribution. The IRS has guidelines on how to calculate the reduced amount.

You can also make a nondeductible contribution to a traditional IRA, put it in cash, and then convert it to a Roth—a strategy commonly referred to as a “backdoor Roth.” This move would cost you little or nothing in taxes, if you have no other IRAs. But if you do, better think twice, since those assets would be counted as part of your tax bill. (For more details see here and here.) There are pros and cons to the conversion decision, and so it may be worthwhile to consult an accountant or adviser before making this move.

Another strategy for boosting savings is to put money into a Health Savings Account, if your company offers one. Tied to high-deductible health insurance plans, HSAs let you stash away money tax free—you can contribute up to $3,350 if you have individual health coverage or up to $6,650 if you’re on a family plan. The money grows tax-free, and the funds can be withdrawn tax-free for medical expenses. Just as with a 401(k), if you leave your company, you can take the money with you. “So many people are worried about paying for health care costs when they retire,” says Ross Langley, a certified public accountant at Halbert Hargrove. “This is a smart move.”

Once you exhaust your tax-friendly retirement options, you can save in a taxable brokerage account, says Langley. Focus on tax-efficient investments such as buy-and-hold stock funds or index funds—you’ll probably be taxed at a 15% capital gains rate, which will be lower than your income tax rate. Fixed-income investments, such as bonds, which throw off interest income, should stay in your 401(k) or IRA.

Do you have a personal finance question for our experts? Write to AskTheExpert@moneymail.com.

Read next: Why Regular Retirement Saving Can Improve Your Health

MONEY identity theft

Here’s What To Do If Your Info Was Stolen from the IRS

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Thomas Northcut—Getty Images

Thieves stole 100,000 past tax returns from the IRS, says the agency.

Criminals using stolen personal data accessed old tax returns of 100,000 people through the Internal Revenue Service’s website, the agency announced Tuesday.

Using Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and other information acquired outside the IRS website, probably from data breaches at other insitutions, the criminals were able to clear a multi-step authentication process and request tax returns and other filings through the IRS’s “Get Transcript” application. The criminals then used the information obtained from those forms to file fraudulent tax returns, the IRS said.

Though the agency has now shut down the “Get Transcript” application, it sent nearly $50 million in refunds to the scammers before detecting the breach.

Later this week, the IRS will begin sending out notification letters to each of the 200,000 taxpayers whose accounts the scammers attempted to access. About 50% of those attempts—some 100,000—were successful, and the IRS will offer free credit monitoring to those taxpayers. Either way, if you are notified by the IRS, there is more you can do to protect yourself.

1. Check In with the IRS

The IRS said it will be “marking taxpayer accounts on our core processing system to flag for potential identity theft to protect taxpayers going forward.” But anyone notified by the IRS—whether your data was successfully stolen or not—should call the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 800-908-4490 to check that the agency has indeed placed an alert on your account and that the system reflects that your information (and return) has been compromised. You may also want to contact your state revenue agency to be certain a state tax return wasn’t fraudulently filed for you as well. (For your state’s hotline, check out this list.)

Also report the theft to local police and have it documented. While local law enforcement is unlikely to investigate, many government agencies and credit bureaus require an official theft report to help you solve the fall-out.

2. Add Another Layer of Security

If you are a victim of id theft, the IRS should issue you a personal identification number that will provide you with another level of security. You’ll need to submit this PIN along with your Social Security number when you file any tax form going forward so that the IRS knows to carefully check over your account. As an identity theft victim, you’ll get a new PIN every year. If you don’t receive it, request one because this extra step could save you from dealing with fraudulent returns year after year.

3. Alert the Credit Bureaus

“If a thief had enough information about you to file a false tax return, he could have also opened new credit card accounts or taken out a loan in your name,” says CPA Troy Lewis, chairman of the American Institute of CPAs’ tax executive committee.

Set up free fraud alerts with the three major credit reporting bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. These alerts, which last 90 days but can be renewed, warn potential creditors or lenders that you are an identity theft victim and that they must verify your identity before issuing credit.

You can go a step further by placing a credit freeze on your files, which instructs the credit agencies to prevent new creditors from viewing your credit score and report. With a police report, it’s free; without one, it can cost as much $10, depending on your state.

A freeze will keep you from accessing instant credit, too. So if you need to apply for a loan, for example, you’ll need to give the agency permission to thaw your data, and in some cases you’ll pay a fee to lift the freeze, which can take a few days.

MONEY advises against paying for credit monitoring services, since you can do the same work yourself for free and the steps above are a better preventative measure. But if the IRS offers it to for free, you may want to sign up for the service.

4. Check Your Credit Report

You are entitled to a free copy of your credit report from each of the three agencies. Check them carefully for unauthorized activity. Look at your history as well as recent activity. Just because you were first alerted to the problem through a false tax return does not mean that’s where the ID theft started.

If you see errors in your report, such as wrong personal information, accounts you didn’t open, or debts you didn’t incur, dispute those errors with each credit agency and the fraud department of the businesses reporting that inaccurate information.

5. Be Patient

The IRS says a typical case of ID theft can take 180 days to resolve. And even after you’ve cleared up this year’s tax mess, tax and credit fraud can be a recurring problem.

When a thief files a false return and beats you to filing, the IRS flags your legit return and processes it manually, meaning your refund could be delayed for months. The IRS will always pay you your refund, regardless of whether it already paid it out to a fraudster. If your tax fraud case hasn’t been resolved and you’re experiencing financial difficulties because of the holdup with your refund, contact the taxpayer advocate service at 877-777-4778.

MONEY Taxes

Thieves Stole $50M in Tax Refunds Using IRS’s Online Tool

The hackers apparently used already-stolen identity information to send phony requests through the IRS's website.

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