June 11,2015

Press Contact:

Aaron Fobes, Julia Lawless (202)224-4515

Hatch, Wyden Welcome Efforts by IRS to Crack Down on Tax Refund Fraud

WASHINGTON – Following a summit with the tax return preparer industry, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) today announced new initiatives to improve information sharing and cut down on tax refund fraud. In response, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) issued the following statement:

“Today’s action by the IRS is welcome news. Over the past five years, we’ve seen a significant uptick in tax refund fraud. Fake returns have put victims’ identities at risk and every taxpayer suffers as their hard-earned dollars fall by the wayside and into the hands of fraudsters. This must stop. The steps announced by the IRS today are a move in the right direction. However, the devil’s in the details, and we will be carefully monitoring how the new agreements are carried out to ensure taxpayers are being adequately protected and whether additional legislation is needed to protect taxpayers.”

NOTE: Last Congress Hatch and Wyden introduced the Tax Refund Theft Prevention Act, legislation to provide enhanced protection for taxpayers against fraudulent tax refund claims that are made with the use of stolen taxpayer identities. Over the past year, the Senators have been soliciting input from stakeholders to improve the bill and hope to re-introduce the bipartisan initiative this Congress.