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Newport News Now

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Newport News Now is a daily e-newsletter that launched in March 2016. Articles that ran in our newsletter between March 2016 and March 2018 are available on these pages. Newsletters produced beginning in April 2018 can be viewed on our new daily newsletter page.

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Apr 19

IRS Makes Significant Debt Collection Changes

Posted on April 19, 2017 at 8:18 AM by Communications Department

The Newport News Police Department’s Economic Crimes Unit wants to highlight a significant change in how the IRS will be handling debt collection in an effort to prevent citizens from falling victim to scams. The IRS is beginning to use private debt collection agencies to collect certain outstanding federal tax debt.
What does this mean for the consumer? First, the IRS will notify consumers through the mail that their debt is being transferred to a private collector. Once the private collector receives the file they will also send a letter through the mail. After these steps, then consumers may receive calls from these private debt collectors.

The IRS will not assign accounts to private collection agencies involving taxpayers who are:
· Deceased;
· Under the age of 18;
· In designated combat zones;
· Victims of tax-related identity theft;
· Currently under examination, litigation, criminal investigation or levy;
· Subject to pending or active offers in compromise;
· Subject to an installment agreement;
· Subject to a right of appeal;
· Classified as innocent spouse cases; or
· In presidentially declared disaster areas and requesting relief from collection;

Private collection agencies and the IRS will never ask for payment on a prepaid debit, iTunes or gift card. Taxpayers will be informed about electronic payment options for taxpayers on Your Tax Bill. Payment by check should be payable to the U.S. Treasury and sent directly to IRS, not the private collection agency.

If you want to verify any information about your tax status visit an IRS office where they can assist you in person. If you believe you have received a scam call or to make a complaint about a private collection agency call the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration hotline at 800-366-4484, visit or write to:

Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration
Post Office Box 589
Ben Franklin Station
Washington, DC 20044-0589

For more information please visit the IRS website at