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Taxpayer ID Numbers Lead To Fraud

One of the biggest arguments used against those of us who try to highlight the problems our country has with illegal immigration is denial. We are often told illegal immigration isn’t really a problem, that we are being unfair to a group of people who are only trying to make a better life for themselves and their families. In light of that claim, there is a new report out from the IRS that shows just how much better some non-resident workers are improving their lives, courtesy of the taxpayer ID program and the IRS. By my count, the report detailed at least $166 million in claims that are possible/probable fraudulent claims.

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(Fox News) A recently released report shows widespread tax fraud in connection with the federal government’s Individual Taxpayer IDTaxpayer Identification Number program.

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The U.S. Treasury inspector general report accuses the IRS of discouraging employees from reviewing applications for the ID numbers, which are generally from non-resident workers.

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The inspector general specifically said there were 154 mailing addresses that were used 1,000 or more times on applications, including 15,795 numbers assigned to a Phoenix address.

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The report, which evaluated the processing year 2011, also found inadequate controls can result in the numbers being assigned to people who have not proved their identity or foreign status, which can result in fraudulent tax returns.

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The inspector general also found 10 individual addresses were used for filing 53,994 tax returns and receiving $86.4 million in fraudulent tax refunds. For example, 23,994 tax refunds totaling $46.3 million were issued to an address in Atlanta; and 2,507 tax refunds totaling $10.4 million were issued to an address in Oxnard, Calif.

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In addition, the Treasury’s Inspector General for Tax Administration reports found 10 bank accounts received 23,560 tax refunds totaling more than $16 million — including: 2,706 tax refunds issued to a single account totaling $7.3 million.

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So, we have the Individual Taxpayer ID Program, which is used primarily by non-resident workers, and has multiple instances which suggests a high probability of fraud, and the IRS doesn’t flag them for investigation. Compare that to what would probably happen if a law-abiding American citizen had multiple tax return payments going to a single account or address. Do you suppose that would be under scrutiny by the IRS? My bet is the answer to that question is yes. IRS investigators would be all over it.

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The IRS has responded to the report by saying they are moving to correct the problems. I have no reason to suspect they are not, but I do question why this wasn’t seen and corrected earlier. This report details only one year of returns. I can’t help but wonder what other years look like. This is a prime example of how illegal immigrants are using our system to make their lives better, at the expense of the American taxpayers.

About LD Jackson

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LD Jackson has written 2053 posts in this blog.

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Founder and author of the political and news commentary blog Political Realities. I have always loved to write, but never have I felt my writing was more important than in this present day. If I have changed one mind or impressed one American about the direction our country is headed, then I will consider my endeavors a success. I take the tag line on this blog very seriously. Above all else, in search of the truth.

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  • I also wonder how many of these illegal aliens receiving fraudulant treturns are also receiving the assistance of many of our welfare programs. What a country this America is.

    • lou222

      Jim, it boils down to the Government being very “free” with OUR money…what nice poeple they are. Don’t you wish they would give US some of it back?

    • That this would be going on boggles my mind. We have the IRS, who gives no one a break. They are sticklers when it comes to Americans paying their taxes, yet they allow this to go on, with no apparent effort to stop it. To say it makes no sense is the understatement of the year.

  • Larry, first of all, illegal immigration IS a problem. I’m not denying it. I’m questioning the source of the problem and all fingers point to the very government we are asking to fix it while leaving the current system that incentivizes this type of criminal activity mostly intact.

    Part of the problem with this new issue you bring up is that none of us have any idea of the magnitude of the problem. Reports of current or former IRS employees committing identity theft fraud such as this or this used to be more common dripping out in the news from time to time usually on slow news days when Romney and Obama aren’t flinging juicy charges at each other. Now not so much even with all these people out of work and needing money, and the point in your article that they’re not even trying to investigate blatant cases makes me much more than a bit suspicious that the reason they’re reluctant to investigate is that they’re afraid they may track a lot of the fraud back to the IRS itself, thus proving how broke the system is.

    I’ve failed over years of searching for the one source to put it all together and expose the magnitude of the problem. All I can come up with are sites like this from companies set up to fight IRS abuse, but they’re woefully inadequate and not verifiable. With all the government programs they foist upon us year after year, how come no one in government is trying to police themselves? Most agency Inspector Generals are a joke. Look at the GSA abuse of their own rules with the lavish conferences they’ve held that have been in the news.

    Getting back to your claim, can you show us a chart showing who specifically is involved in all these frauds they do investigate and to what extent? How many of them are illegal aliens acting on their own by themselves and how many are rings led by former IRS agents or other criminals who know the ins and outs of the system and are using the illegals as they do “drug mules” pocketing the cash and leaving Pablo to the authorities if it gets investigated? I sure don’t know and I doubt that they do, and if they did, they probably wouldn’t tell us. I’m also sure a fair amount of welfare/food stamp fraud can be traced to rings as well, using poor Pablo and Maria as mules.

    This has all the implications of the inevitable failure of the drug war. The DEA cannot stop all the mules because there are so many more poor destitute people willing or unwillingly forced to take the chance.

    Ron Paul has it right. Get rid of the IRS and many of the problems associated with this type of fraud will be solved. Definitely don’t give them more power over your personal rights and freedoms to combat a problem that only exists because they exist.

    • I haven’t seen a chart that has the information you asked about. Chances are, that kind of information will never be made public.

      Make no mistake, I realize a portion of our government is corrupt. That is the result of having such a massive bureaucracy. It is almost impossible to keep it all in check. We would do well to take that into account and follow Ron Paul’s advice of getting rid of the IRS and other agencies that do nothing but burden American citizens.

      • True. It’s also very important to look at this issue in terms of it being such a massive bureaucracy which shows even more why they won’t ever care. This article identifies about 166 million in fraud. Undoubtedly, there’s more than that, but let’s use that number. It certainly looks massive compared our individual incomes which is sure to raise our hackles and rightly so, but try looking at it from the perspective the Federal government alone spends over 400 million per hour! Compare that to you losing a dime. If your time was worth $20 an hour, you wouldn’t want to waste a minute looking for it for you make 33 cents for each minute of labor so you’d lose money to divert your attention to find it.

        And don’t get me wrong, for I’m not trying to make excuses for illegals and most definitely not saying you’re wrong for being incensed about this or even for writing about it, for more knowledge and awareness increases power to do something about it. However, there are at least two different ways to look at it, cost/benefit and right/wrong. Spending more to specifically hunt more of them down would be a waste of resources especially in terms of opportunity costs. Someone like Gary Johnson might even be compelled to do the same thing from his cost/benefit perspective.

        As Henry David Thoreau said, “There are thousands striking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.” That root is the out of control government which refuses to stay within its Constitutional boundaries that feeds the branches. Illegal immigrants are just bugs feeding on those branches. And the real problem is that so many of us also benefit from so many of these Federal programs that we refuse to focus on striking the root.