In IR-2023-56 issued on March 23, 2023 the IRS explained that most IRS contacts with taxpayers are through regular mail delivered by the United States Postal Service. However, there are limited circumstances when the IRS will come to a home or business as part of a collection investigation, an audit or an ongoing criminal investigation.
IRS In-Person Visits
IRS employees that may make face-to-face visits outside an IRS office include revenue officers, revenue agents and IRS Criminal Investigation special agents. IRS employees are trained to respect taxpayer rights, and there are some important facts to keep in mind about the different types of visits.
Revenue Officers are IRS civil enforcement employees who work to resolve compliance issues such as unfiled returns and/or taxes owed; all situations where the taxpayer typically would have received multiple IRS letters in advance.
These in-person visits may be unscheduled and can be to share information, inform taxpayers of their tax filing and payment obligations and work with taxpayers to resolve their tax issues and bring them into compliance.
They conduct interviews to gather financial information and provide taxpayers with the necessary steps to become and remain compliant with the tax laws.
Revenue Agents usually conduct in-person field audits that are normally at the taxpayer's home, place of business or accountant's office where the organization's financial books and records are located. Revenue agents will make contact via mail or phone prior to any visit.
Revenue officers and agents always carry two forms of official credentials with a serial number and their photo. Taxpayers have the right to see each of these credentials and can also request an additional method to verify their identification.
More information on identifying legitimate IRS representatives and how to report scams can be found at IRS.gov.
IRS-CI Special Agents investigate potential criminal violations of the Internal Revenue Code and related financial crimes. IRS-CI's investigative jurisdiction includes tax, money laundering and Bank Secrecy Act laws. IRS-CI special agents always present their law enforcement credentials when conducting investigations.
IRS-CI may visit a taxpayer's home or business unannounced during an investigation. However, they will not demand any sort of payment. Learn more about IRS-CI on IRS.gov.
How to report impersonation scams
If a person doesn't have a previously known tax issue and suspects someone is trying to impersonate an IRS employee, there are a variety of options to report these scams.
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