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Tax Blog

Fake Charity Tax Scams

In times of disaster, the average taxpayer must be vigilant against fake charities. It is natural for people to want to donate to help victims during such crises, but scammers often exploit this generosity. These fraudulent entities create fake charities to siphon money and steal personal information for identity fraud, preying on the goodwill of unsuspecting donors. It is crucial to recognize that legitimate charities will never pressure you to donate. They appreciate contributions of any size without resorting to high-pressure tactics. Scammers, however, may create stressful situations to coerce donations. Be wary of charities that request gift card numbers or wire transfers, as these are common red flags. Instead, opt to donate via credit card or check after verifying the charity's authenticity. To ensure a charity is legitimate, use the IRS's Tax-Exempt Organization Search (TEOS) tool. Scammers often use names similar to well-known charities to confuse donors. Before donating, ask fundraisers for the charity’s name, website, and mailing address. This allows you to double-check their legitimacy through reliable sources. It is also important to protect your personal information. Scammers are not only after your money but also your data. Never provide Social Security numbers, credit card numbers, or personal identification numbers. Only share the necessary information for the donation, such as your bank or credit card details, and only after confirming the charity's legitimacy. By taking these precautions, you can help ensure your donations reach those truly in need and avoid falling victim to scammers who exploit disasters for personal gain. Always remain cautious and perform due diligence before making any charitable contributions. For more information, please contact the professionals at The Center for Financial, Legal, & Tax Planning, Inc., at (618) 997-3436.


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