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IRS: Watch out for fake tax return checks

3:31 PM, Mar 17, 2011   |    comments
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James King has spent the past few weeks trying to future out why he got a $6,000 tax refund.

"I have not filed my taxes for 2010," he says.

King says the IRS confirmed someone had filed a tax return using his name and social security number and that a refund had been issued, somewhat explaining the $6,000 check he got in the mail.

Now King knows he's not the only one dealing with some mystery money.

At least ten more Florida residents who saw a news report on King's mysterious refund have come forward with similar stories.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office says it's gotten 25 reports since the beginning of the year, some from people who tried to file their taxes and were told by the IRS someone already did it and some from those who got checks.

Rae Ellen Rourke received a check for more than $9,000.

Rourke had a bank manager look at it.

"They told me it was actually a real cashier's check," she says.

She called the IRS.

Like King, she has not yet filed her 2010 taxes, but found out what she can expect when she files her real return.

It will likely take one to three years for the IRS to sort out her case.

Her refund will be delayed during the investigation.

An IRS spokesman says he can't comment on specific cases, but also said he has never seen clusters like this before.

Each case will be investigated individually.

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