WASHINGTON, D.C. – Beware of scammers trying to collect your Child Tax Credit payments, that’s the message from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) this week.
The warning comes just one week after the agency began sending out those advanced Child Tax Credit payments.
While scammers often come up with new ways to steal your money, officials say there are some easy ways to tell if the call or email you receive is fake.
“The IRS is never going to threaten you,” said Luis Garcia, IRS spokesman. “The I.R.S. is never going to demand immediate payment. A lot of times, these scam artists say if you don’t pay right now, we’re going to send the police.”
The Child Tax Credit payments are a hot commodity because half of the annual credit will be sent out over the next six months. They are between $3,600 for children under age 6 and $3,000 for kids ages 6 to 17. The other half will be released after parents file their taxes next year.
The I.R.S. is asking Americans to be vigilant now and in the future.
“We’re never going to demand you pay a particular way,” Garcia said. “We’re never going to demand you pay immediately. And we’re never, ever going to threaten you.”
The I.R.S. also tells us they will not ask Americans to verify personal information to receive the Child Tax Credit.
All of this comes after scammers stole more than $56 billion from 49 million Americans through various schemes in 2020, according to Javelin Strategy & Research.