Victims of ID theft still wait for 2011 refunds

TAMPA - Try telling Colleen Scharber that 3,000 IRS workers are dedicated to helping people just like her.  She has spoken with five IRS workers in the last 10 months.

"You never get to speak to the same person twice and then we were told its going to be 210 days, or its going to be 90 days, or whatever amount of days they decided to pull out of their ear," said Scharber.

She simply wants her $1,300 refund from 2011.

Rachael Newton can relate.  Newton works part time and files an E-Z return. Tax fraud thieves hijacked her $500 refund from 2011, but the IRS still hasn't returned her money.

In response to the delays, spokesperson Michael Dobzinski sent an email:  "Taxpayers are likely to see their refunds delayed for an extended period of time while we take the necessary actions to resolve the matter. A typical case can take about 180 days to resolve, and the IRS is working to reduce that time period."

The IRS won't discuss specific cases, nor would their spokesperson explain why It would take the agency upwards of 10 months to resolve a refund fraud case involving an E-Z filer.

Now if you or someone you know is awaiting a refund from 2011 and has already been in touch with the IRS, there are two numbers to call, one for the id protection specialized unit, the other for the taxpayer advocate service.

You can reach the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit, toll-free, at 800-908-4490.  If victims can't get their issue resolved and are experiencing financial difficulties, contact the Taxpayer Advocate Service toll-free at 877-777-4778.

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