Comptroller Franchot Warns Maryland Taxpayers of Tax Phone Scams

Taxpayers Advised Not to Respond to Suspicious Calls

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (January 13, 2016) – With the 2016 tax filing season under way, Comptroller Peter Franchot wants to remind taxpayers to safeguard their personal information by being alert to phone solicitation scams aimed at getting their money and personal information.

The Comptroller’s Office recently received calls from concerned taxpayers about receiving phone calls from someone claiming to work for the State of Maryland. These scammers tell taxpayers they owe large sums of money, demand payment and threatened police arrest if the callers don’t comply.

“I want to assure taxpayers that phone calls like this are scams. The Comptroller’s Office does not initiate phone calls or emails asking for confidential information, demanding money or Personal Identification Numbers (PINs),” Comptroller Franchot said. “If you get a phone call like this, please call 1-800-MD-TAXES or email my office at mdcomptroller@comp.state.md.us and let us know about it as soon as possible.”

The Comptroller’s Field Enforcement Division investigates suspicious activity reported by taxpayers. Comptroller Franchot’s top legislative priority this year is the Taxpayer Protection Act, which provides greater tools to prevent fraud and protect taxpayers.
The Maryland Comptoller’s Office, like the Internal Revenue Service, will never:

• Call to demand immediate payment, nor call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill.
• Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
• Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.

“Please be careful of your personal information, and be sure to tell your friends and neighbors to be careful of any suspicious calls,” the Comptroller said.

Media Contact: Vicki Fisher, 410-260-7816 (office) and 443-534-6259 (cell)