If you were reading my blog back in February, you'll remember that we had yet another experience of identity theft. In this occasion someone filed a false income tax return under my husband's social security number. (Click here for the whole story.)
Well, we still haven't gotten our tax return--we filed in January. And several new insults have occurred. Be warned this could happen to you too.
The latest thing we discovered (after my husband produced a driver's license, US passport, etc., to verify who he was) is that the thief gets to dispute it. After Cal proved his identity, then the IRS sends a letter to the thief giving him three months to prove that Cal's social security number is really his (the thief's). After those three months, The government sends the thief another letter, and the thief has another three months. After those six months (or more given the government's slow methods--we've been told to expect a year's wait) have passed, then they can begin to process our tax return.
Oh, and by the way, when we first reported the identity theft to the IRS and filed all the legal paperwork (affidavits, etc.), we discovered a month later when Cal checked up on the paperwork that the IRS agent made a "mistake." Instead of filing our claim as "identity theft," the agent filed it as a "change of address." Oops. Sorry.
Just when we thought that we understood the onerous process and were making progress, Cal got a letter this week. The Social Security agency sent him a letter saying that his social security number of 000-00-0000 didn't match their records. Really?! Imagine that. I'm not sure what that means. Except we won't be getting our tax return this year. Maybe next. I wonder if the government will pay us interest...