When the IRS needs to contact a taxpayer, the first contact is normally by letter delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. The IRS doesn’t normally initiate contact with taxpayers by email, nor does it send text messages or contact through social media channels.
Depending on the situation, IRS employees may first call or visit with a taxpayer. In some instances, advance notice is provided in writing via a letter or notice, but not always.
IRS Phone Calls
Ask For Credentials
IRS representatives can always provide two forms of official credentials: a pocket commission and a Personal Identity Verification Credential (PIV). Pocket commissions describe the specific authority and responsibilities of the authorized holder. The PIV is a government-wide standard for secure and reliable forms of identification for federal employees and contractors. Criminal investigators also have a badge and law enforcement credentials.
All tax payments are to the U.S. Treasury. Taxpayers should never use a preloaded debit card or wire transfer to make a payment. The IRS provides specific guidelines on how to make a tax payment at irs.gov/payments.
IRS employees and contractors will never:
Avoid scams. The IRS never initiates contact using social media or text messages. First contact generally comes in the mail. A special page on IRS.gov, “How to know it’s really the IRS calling or knocking on your door,” helps taxpayers determine if a person claiming to be from the IRS is legitimate or an imposter.
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