On January 31, employers will start to send out W-2 forms and Dan Buchta with the Better Business Bureau says there are three specific scams that occur in Montana. The first is the IRS imposter scam.

“I think everyone knows about this one because it is like one in every five people have either received a call or an email, but that is when somebody pretends to be the IRS and they call you and they pressure you to make a wire transfer of money to pay back taxes right away or else you are going to go to jail,” said Buchta. “That scam is the number one scam in the United States.”

According to Buchta, tax relief companies can also scam people during this time of year.

“There may be some legitimate ones, but a lot of them inflate the consumers expectations by making them think that they are going to get a huge break on their taxes,” Buchta said. “They have upfront fees and then some of them have reoccurring fees month after month after month. You have to be very careful of those. There are a lot of people that go that route and they end up paying these companies more than they owe the IRS.”

Buchta says the final scam people should be aware of is identity theft.

“Somebody can take your name, date of birth, social security number and with those three pieces of information they can create a fake W-2,” Buchta said. “In the first week of February they can file for a tax return under your name and have it sent to their address. They can cash the check and be on the run long before you know anything happened.”

Buchta reminds people that the IRS will only contact you via a letter in the mail.