Friday is the first day Americans can officially begin filing their tax returns according to the IRS Denver Field Office.

IRS Special Agent  in Charge of Criminal Investigations Andy Tsui in Denver provided information to KGVO for taxpayers in Montana.

"Some advice we like to give is to make sure you do your research and selecting a tax preparer,” said Agent Tsui. “If there are promises of outrageous tax refunds, be cautious of that, and certainly review your tax return before you sign or approve anything, get a copy of your tax return and make sure your refund gets direct deposited to your account as opposed to your tax preparer’s account.”

Tsui said to also be aware of IRS tax scams that are prevalent during this time of year.

“There is actually a lot of tax related fraud outside of tax preparation that also occurs,” he said. “So we see an uptick of IRS impersonations and things like that where the criminals are looking for your information either to steal your identity or file a tax return in your name.”

Tsui said the IRS has very specific methods of contacting a taxpayer in case there are problems with a return.

“Just remember the IRS does not use social media to contact taxpayers,” he said. “The IRS does not threaten taxpayers over the phone. The IRS does not ask for your personal information through text messages or social media, and will not communicate that way for any kind of information.”

Ultimately, Tsui reminds taxpayers that they are solely responsible for the content of their tax returns.

“With tax filings and your tax returns, the liability on mistakes or other issues around your taxes is the taxpayers responsibility,” he said. “So even though you may have someone preparing the return for you, if there is an issue with the amount of the refund and there is money that's due back to the IRS because of that, it is the sole responsibility of taxpayer.”

For more information, contact the Denver IRS Field Office at Denverfieldoffice@ci.irs.gov.

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