My Tax Scam Experience with “IRS Agent” Michael Smith from Wisconsin

My Tax Scam Experience with “IRS Agent” Michael Smith from Wisconsin

Let’s start from the beginning. Today I received an automated call from the number 1-920-535-4222. My phone calls with “IRS Agent Michael Smith” and “Senior Officer David Johnson” from Wisconsin.

I understand that this is a bunch of information, but I wanted to get out the full story of my dealings with these phone scammers. I rushed this information out to get the word out, so please ignore my bad grammar and spelling.


In broken robotic English the message states: Read More »

Posted in Crime, Finance | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments closed

2016 IRS Refund Cycle Chart and e-file payment information.

2016 IRS Refund Cycle Chart and e-file payment information.

2015 Refund ScheduleThis is the schedule for 2016 IRS Refund Cycle Chart. Direct Deposit and Check date’s below. Please see disclaimer. 2016 tax refund schedule is listed below for information purposes. Find out when you’re state income tax refund will be in.

Show your support by liking and sharing Refund Schedule on Facebook. When should I get my IRS Tax Refund in 2016?

Get the “Where’s my refund?” app on Android & Apple IPhone/IPad/IPod App. Our 2015 IRS Refund Cycle Chart Below.

Read More »

Posted in General | Comments closed

2015 IRS Refund Cycle Chart for 2014 Tax Year

2015 IRS Refund Cycle Chart and e-file payment information.

Having trouble viewing our 2015 IRS Tax Refund Schedule? We do offer a printable version, view here.

2015 Refund ScheduleThis is the schedule for 2015 IRS Refund Cycle Chart. Direct Deposit and Check date’s below. Please see disclaimer. 2015 tax refund schedule is listed below for information purposes. Find out when you’re state income tax refund will be in.

January 20th, 2015 is the first day of tax season 2015. Show your support by liking and sharing Refund Schedule on Facebook. When should I get my IRS Tax Refund in 2015?

The I.R.S will begin accepting tax returns January 20th, 2015. The IRS begin accepting some 2014 tax returns for test purposes starting January 12th, 2015.

For those who have asked, 2014 Tax Refunds Will Not Be Delayed Until October 2015. Get the “Where’s my refund?” app on Android & Apple IPhone/IPad/IPod App. Our 2015 IRS Refund Cycle Chart Below.

Read More »

Posted in Finance | Tagged | Comments closed

Can Unpaid Taxes Affect My Credit Score?

It’s one of the tax questions I’ve been asked more than once: Can unpaid taxes affect my credit score? Unfortunately, if you’re not careful, the answer is yes.

Once upon a time, a friend quit his job and opened a business. In the first year, he ended up with a huge surprise profit. As a result, he owed thousands of dollars in income taxes he wasn’t prepared to pay. Although I set him up on an installment agreement, the IRS computers recorded a lien on his credit report.

This isn’t a fairy tale. It really happened, and it continues to happen every day. When you owe money to the IRS, the agency’s computer may report a lien—even if the agency says it won’t issue one. And if you wind up with a tax lien on your credit report, it can have a negative impact on your credit score.

What to do if the IRS places a lien on your credit report

During the past few years, many responsible people have faced financial hardship. Tax liens have caused consumers so much trouble that Nina E. Olson, the National Taxpayer Advocate, has addressed liens in her reports to Congress. (You can watch a video on this page.)

As a result of the pressure Olson has placed on Congress, the IRS has developed two tools to help you.

The first one is the Fresh Start program, which helps struggling taxpayers who owe money to the IRS through penalty relief, installment agreements, and offers in compromise. To apply, visit the IRS website.

Olson’s efforts have also resulted in a way for taxpayers to have liens withdrawn instead of removed. Withdrawing a lien deletes it from your credit entirely, as if it never existed. Not everyone will qualify, but you can apply using an Application for Withdrawal (Form 12277).

How you can avoid a lien

Pay off at least some of the balance. If you owe more than $10,000, try to find a way to pay off enough of the taxes, penalty, and interest to bring the balance down under $10,000. This may help you avoid a lien.

Take out a loan. You may be able to find a private way to pay off the IRS or any state taxes that you owe. Try bank loans, friends, credit cards, or home equity lines of credit (HELOC). If you choose a HELOC, be very careful to make your payments on time—you don’t want to lose your home.

Use your assets. Sell off long-term capital assets such as securities, collectibles, or real estate.

Get creative. Earn enough money to pay off the taxes by writing a book or e-book or by creating an electronic product. You may also be able to get a commission by selling a large item—such as a house or car—for someone else.

Whatever you do, don’t draw the money from your retirement plans, especially if you are under age 59½. That’s the most expensive money you can use. It will cost you at least 30 percent in IRS and state taxes, plus at least 10 percent in early withdrawal penalties.

Posted in Finance | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

FICO to Release New Credit Scoring System

Credit and business analysis company FICO has announced a change to the well-known FICO Score, the most commonly-used measure of U.S. consumer credit risk. The new scoring system will be available beginning this summer.


Using a new, multi-faceted modeling approach, which combines sophisticated in-house analytic technology with insights gained over 50 years of building credit risk models, FICO Score 9 will provide best-in-class predictive power across all major credit product lines – mortgages, auto loans, credit cards and personal loans – from originations through account management.

FICO has also addressed lenders’ concerns regarding score consistency across the three major credit bureaus, and compatibility with previous FICO Score versions to ease adoption. The FICO Score continues to help keep lenders aligned with key compliance objectives and relevant government regulations.

The FICO Score is the most widely used credit score in North America.  Lenders purchased more than 10 billion FICO Scores in 2013, and 90 percent of all U.S. consumer lending decisions use the FICO Score.  The 25 largest credit card issuers, the 25 largest auto lenders and tens of thousands of other businesses rely on the FICO Score for consumer credit risk analysis and federal regulatory compliance.

“To become a widely adopted industry standard, a credit score must work well across industries, across all lending product lines and across the entire credit lifecycle,” said James Wehmann, executive vice president of Scores at FICO.  “The major changes in the lending environment over the last few years demanded that we take a different approach to building a score that will continue to perform consistently well in various situations.  We devised an innovative approach to developing FICO Score 9 that enabled us to leapfrog our own industry-standard benchmark.  Our goal is to continue to support a financial ecosystem that includes lenders, securitization investors, rating agencies, regulators and other stakeholders who need a common risk benchmark.”

“Our innovative, multi-faceted modeling approach incorporates a more exhaustive characteristic selection process to build a score that is even more effective across a wide variety of situations,” said Andrew Jennings, chief analytic officer for FICO.  “This approach also uses FICO Model Builder’s Multiple Goal Scorecard technology – a sophisticated tool that balances different scoring objectives applied across various product lines. As a result, we will deliver a new FICO Score that continues to be the credit score that defines U.S. consumer credit risk.”

FICO Score 9 will be the first release in a suite of updated and new FICO Scores.  It will be followed by industry-specific FICO Scores for credit cards, auto loans and mortgages.  Future scores in the suite will build on FICO’s deep expertise in analyzing a broad spectrum of data types, as well as its keen understanding of client needs.  These scores will be developed to reliably assess the creditworthiness of even more people.

“Lenders today are actively looking to extend credit to new customers in ways that are prudent and comply with their latest regulatory and compliance standards,” said Wehmann.  “Additional scores in the FICO 9 Score suite will help them accomplish these objectives.”

The FICO Score is also available at no charge to consumers through the FICO® Score Open Access program.  Since the program’s launch in late 2013, nearly 30 million U.S. consumers have received access to their FICO Score for free.

Posted in Finance | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Why is my 2014 tax refund still processing

Why is my 2014 refund still processing?

2014 IRS Tax Refund Schedule wrong for you?

By the stats, the current tax season has been quite a success. The Internal Revenue Service is reporting that, despite an abbreviated season, they are processing tax returns and issuing tax refunds at a much faster pace than last year. Why is my 2014 refund still processing?

Of course, all of the numbers in the world don’t matter when the one number you’re counting on – your own refund – is affected.

This season, I’ve heard from a number of taxpayers experiencing tax refund delays (though certainly nothing near last year’s education credit snafu). Initially, the trouble seemed to focus on those 1121 codes. The IRS was made aware of the problem and did issue a statement, saying:

A very small percentage of taxpayers may see an 1121 reference number if they check “Where’s My Refund?” after they initially were provided a projected refund date by the tool. The IRS is aware of this situation, and emphasizes that the small group of taxpayers who see this reference number should continue checking Where’s My Refund for an update. If we need more information to process their return, we will contact them — usually by mail.

Most of the taxpayers who reached out to me regarding the 1121 issue have since reported that they’ve either received their refunds or updated information about the delay.

However, shortly after the 1121 issue was made public, the focus from taxpayers on social media – and in emails, direct messages and private messages to me – has zeroed in on another code that’s popping up over and over: TC 570. There is a notable difference between the 1121 code and the TC 570: the latter is not an explicit refund code. It appears not on the “Where’s My Refund?” tool but on a taxpayer’s transcript. That’s an important distinction.

I reached out to IRS to find out whether there was any sort of systemic issue causing taxpayers to see a TC 570 on their transcript. So far, the answer to that question is no. The IRS is, however, clearly aware of the concerns and had this to say:

A Transaction Code 570 can mean different things in different cases so a taxpayer should not try to draw a conclusion based on the presence of a TC 570. The Transaction Code 570 will stop a refund from being issued until the impact of the action being taken on the account and the refund is determined and processed. Transaction Codes are used internally by the IRS to identify a transaction, adjust and research tax accounts and to maintain a history of actions posted to a taxpayer’s account. While they are reflected on transcripts they are not reflected on most public facing documents or tools like Where’s My Refund because they are difficult to interpret and can have different meaning depending on the case and associated codes and files. Again, the best way for taxpayers to check the status of their refund is by going to Where’s My Refund.

It’s a statement worth repeating. The IRS uses a lot of internal codes on transcripts and they can mean different things. And what it means exactly isn’t always apparent to the person taking the call at IRS. Does that suck? Of course it does. Trust me. I’ve been on the end of those calls trying to decipher what’s going on for taxpayers. And I totally believe that taxpayers are calling IRS and getting two or three different answers about the status of their refund. And I believe that taxpayers deserve a better answer.

But I would caution taxpayers not to try and pick apart their tax transcripts in an effort to find answers. There is no “one size fits all” answer to the TC 570 – not even in the best of circumstances. It does not necessarily equate, as some have surmised, an audit. Nor does it means, as others have posited, that the refund is subject to an offset. It could mean those things – but again, you’re not going to be able to tell from a glimpse at your transcript this early in the season.

Those codes? They don’t always mean what you think they mean.

I know that isn’t the answer that taxpayers want to hear. And trust me, I am continuing to pester IRS about these issues (believe me when I say that they have my number). But it’s not a certainty that a TC 570 on your transcript is anything sinister at this stage of the season. The data doesn’t appear to support it. And if there’s a real problem with your specific return, you’ll hear from IRS.

And yes, there have been problems. I have confirmed reports that a glitch in at least one program has resulted in the issuance of paper checks instead of direct deposit. Errors – mostly transposition of numbers – have slowed processing of other returns. There have been bounces for bad addresses. Returns have been held because of prior years when no returns were filed. And yes, identity theft continues to be a big problem especially when SocialSecurity numbers for dependents have appeared on more than one return. Clearly, not everyone is having a smooth tax season.

By the numbers, however, most taxpayers are getting their refunds as quickly as anticipated. On average, the IRS expects to issue tax refund checks to 9 of 10 taxpayers in 21 days or less. Those are pretty good odds. But that still means that 1 in 10 taxpayers will receive refund checks after that 21 day window. That sounds like a pretty small number until you calculate the total against the number of refunds issued. The IRS expects to process about 140 million tax returns this season. In 2013, they issued more than 100 million tax refund checks. If 1 in 10 taxpayers get their refunds after 21 days, that still works out to about 10 million taxpayers. That’s more than the individual populations of 42 states. It’s more than the combination populations of Alabama and South Carolina, the 23rd and 24th most populous states. So, yes, it’s a lot. But the number of taxpayers who do receive their refunds within that 21 day window? That’s more than the combined populations of our most populous states (California, Texas and Florida) or more astoundingly, the combined population of 25 of our least populous states.

Does that help those taxpayers who are depending on refund checks that have not yet been deposited? Of course not. I know you want your money. And I know that in many cases, you’re depending on that money. But work through the right channels. Keep checking the “Where’s My Refund?” tool for information. If you are advised to call the IRS, do so. If you get mail from IRS, open it. But at this stage, it truly is a waiting game. If I hear anything further (and I am pursuing these issues), rest assured that I will post it as soon as it becomes available.

Discuss this and more on the Income Tax Forums.

Need help preparing your 2014 Tax Return? Visit Hot Springs Tax Services.

Posted in Finance | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

IRS Warns of Tax Scams

IRS Warns of Tax Scams in 2014.

The IRS is warning Americans of tax scams. This year identity theft and phone scams top the agency’s “Dirty Dozen” list of worst schemes taxpayers could encounter.

In a news release, the IRS announced Americans could see these scams at any point in the year, but many of the schemes peak during tax season.

“Scams can be sophisticated and take many different forms. We urge people to protect themselves and use caution when viewing emails, receiving phone calls or getting advice on tax issues,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said in a news release.

Below are the top three scams taxpayers should be on the lookout this year. IRS Warns of Tax Scams!

Identity Theft

The IRS said tax fraud through identity theft tops this year’s list. Fraudsters like to get taxpayers Social Security Number and other bits of information. They then use it to fraudulently file a tax return and claim the refund.

The IRS suggests taxpayers be alert to possible identity theft if they receive an IRS notice that states:

  • More than one tax return for you was filed.
  • You have a balance due, refund offset or have had collection actions taken against you for a year you did not file a tax return.
  • IRS records indicated you received wages from an employer unknown to you.

If you believe you were a victim of identity theft the IRS suggests you notify the agency as soon as possible.

Telephone Scams

The IRS said it has seen an increase in local phone scams across the United States. Callers pretned to be from the IRS. The goal is to steal money or identities from victims.

According to the IRS, these scams come in many variations. Some callers will say the victim owes money or is entitled to a larg refund. Others might threaten arrest or driver’s license revocation.

Common characteristics of these scams include:

  • Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers.
  • Callers might be able to recite the last four digits of a victims Social Security Number.
  • Con artists may imitate the IRS toll-free number to make it seems like it’s the IRS calling.
  • Scammers sometimes send falsified IRS emails to victims to support their bogus calls.

False Promises of “Free Money”

It is common for scam artists to pose as tax preparers during tax season. The IRS said scammers lure victims in by promising large federal tax refunds. They use flyers, phony store fronts and word of mouth to attract as many victims as possible. The IRS said these scammers prey on people who do have a filing requirement like low-income individuals and the elderly.

For more information on these scams and several others visit

Find out when your Income Tax Return will arrive on our 2014 IRS E-File Cycle Chart.

Discuss this on the Income Tax Forums.

Posted in Finance | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment



February 6th, 2014, 12:00A.M. the I.R.S. sent out thousands of tax payments to individuals who filed before January 31st, 2014. Some individuals who filed before January 31st, 2014 were not included in this due to the overflow of individuals who submitted their returns. Those individuals should watch the Where’s My Refund page and expect a payout on the next payout day being “on or before February 13th, 2014.”

Please reply to this post when you submitted, were accepted, approved, and if you received your refund last night.

Posted in Finance | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

When did you get your refund 2014

Today is the official start to the I.R.S. 2013 Tax Season. We want to compile a list of payments dates for our users to see to better help them determine the date that they will get their refund. So we pose the question, “When did you get your refund 2014?”

We would like everyone to reply to this post with the date that their refund was accepted and the date that I.R.S. has set for their direct deposit or check. To find out this date, you will need to visit the I.R.S. Where’s My Refund webpage here.

Optionally, we would also like you to post the date that your state refund, what state, and when your state finance department gives your refund date. To find out this, visit our Where’s My State Refund page.

Please comment here with Federal Acceptance Date, Federal Payout Date, (optional) State Acceptance Date, State, and State Acceptance Date.

Thank you for helping to make our 2014 Refund Schedule to be as accurate as possible.

Posted in Finance | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

IRS accepted thousands of 2013 tax returns on January 24th 2014

The Internal Revenue Service begun accepting returns January 24th, 2014.

We have received hundreds of reports that the I.R.S. has been accepting tax returns before January 31st, 2014. It seems that they have started accepting select few income tax returns on January 24th 2014. We contacted the I.R.S. on that day and were told that to help with the case load, they have accepted some returns early. They plan is to accept returns all next week that meet very strict rules.

Please comment on here when you were accepted, so that we can keep see if they do a pay out on January 29th. This would be in line with 2012 and 2011 tax returns.

From Hot Springs Tax Services: We have had several clients who filed within the last two weeks have their Federal Tax Returns accepted by the I.R.S. We expect the I.R.S. to have a payout date on Wednesday, January 29th, 2014. Just a reminder, there are no guarantees when it comes to the I.R.S.

From the I.R.S. Where’s My Refund website:

“We have received your tax return and it is being processed.

You should get your refund within 21 days from the date we received your tax return.”

Thank you.


IRS Delays Start of 2014 U.S. Tax Filing Citing Shutdown

Posted in Finance | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment