Friday, March 7, 2008

Seniors Beware of Tax Season Scams!

BOSTON — USA - By Sue Scheible

While looking out for their federal rebates, Massachusetts seniors are being warned to look out for scam artists trying to filch their money as they wait.

Still, the federal rebate scam drew special attention because it is universal: Individuals will receive $600, couples $1,200, from the Internal Revenue Service as part of an economic stimulus bill. But there is no way to speed up the rebate other than filing a tax return.

Yet people claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service or a bank have been telling elders they can their one-time rebate sooner by relaying personal information.

“People are being called and told, ‘Give us your Social Security number and we’ll send you the checks early,’” Coakley said.

The headlines focus on physical abuse, because it shocks the conscience,” Festa said. “But other types of abuse -- emotional, sexual, and financial -- can sometimes leave longer lasting effects. “A senior who is beaten may recover faster than one who sees their bank account totally cleaned out.”


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