(FinancialHealth.net) – Tax season comes and goes each year with thousands of people having their identities stolen or their refund checks taken from them. It is one of the most popular times of the year for people to become targets. There are many reasons for this targeting, including the large lump sums of money people often get back on their refunds.
Refunds Average $3,000
The average refund amount for taxpayers is $3,000. This is a huge lump sum of money for many people and criminals would love to get their hands on it. Never disclose how much you are getting back, or even how much you’ve gotten in the past. You never know who would use that information against you to try and make a claim in your name.
Debt Collectors Know People Have Money
Criminals aren’t the only ones out to get your money. Debt collectors step up their game during tax season because they know a lot more people have money during this timeframe. They may start calling more often in hopes of getting you to settle old debts. This can turn out well for you in some instances, though, as many are so eager to have your debts collected that they will take pennies on the dollar to have it squared away. The problem is that other collectors may see you paid off someone else, and also start asking for their share of the money.
Tax Preparation Services Offer Tax Refund Loans
With the use of online services, tax preparation services are dwindling. Many now offer incentives like tax refund loans to get people in the door. Many people utilize these loans as a way to get cash fast, but they pay for it later when they have to not only pay a fee to the tax preparer, but also interest for not paying it off within a certain timeframe. Even the companies that offer interest-free options are not really doing you a favor. They up their usage fees so you are paying an incredibly high rate just for using their service.
Tax season can bring you huge benefits, but it also has its downfalls. The more money you get back, the more of a target you become. Criminals looking to get a payday, debt collectors in need of their money, and tax preparers wanting fees all come out of the woodwork during tax time. Use caution when filing your taxes and spending your money so you can avoid being targeted.
~Here’s to Your Financial Health!
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