IRS Agent USes False Name to Enter House and Threatens Taxpayer, Lawyer and Police

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IRS Agent USes False Name to Enter House and Threatens Taxpayer, Lawyer and Police

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An IRS agent used an alias and false pretenses to make a tax inquiry during a visit to an Ohio resident’s home in April, according to the House Judiciary Committee.

Committee chairman Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) laid out the details of the incident, which he described as “bizarre,” in a letter Friday to IRS Commissioner Daniel Werfel, asking Werfel for an array of documents related to the matter.

“We have recently received allegations that an Internal Revenue Service agent provided a false name to an Ohio taxpayer as part of a deception to gain entry into the taxpayer’s home to confront her about delinquent tax filings,” Jordan wrote.

According to Jordan, the allegations included the agent falsely telling the resident, who is the fiduciary of an estate, that his name was “Bill Haus” and that he needed to discuss an issue the IRS had found with her tax filings on the estate.

Once inside, the agent revealed the real reason for the visit, saying he was actually there not to inquire about the estate but to obtain sensitive details about the decedent of it, who the agent alleged had “several” annual tax return delinquencies, Jordan wrote.

The resident then called her attorney, who told the agent to leave, according to Jordan.

The agent responded “aggressively,” telling the attorney he was entitled to enter homes because of his position at the IRS and telling the resident she would soon receive IRS bills for the decedent’s allegedly unresolved taxes and that she would need to pay them within one week or suffer severe financial consequences, Jordan wrote.

The incident has now come under deep scrutiny, making it into the hands of the local Ohio police, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), the House Judiciary Committee, and now the IRS.

The resident had initially reported the incident to the Marion, Ohio, police, and once the police called the IRS agent and the agent admitted to having used an alias, the police told the agent not to visit the resident again, leading the agent to file a complaint with TIGTA, Jordan said.

Now, the chairman is seeking all documents and communications related to the incident from the IRS and asking that the agency provide them by June 30.

“This behavior from an IRS agent to an American taxpayer—providing an alias, using deception to secure entry into the taxpayer’s home, and then filing an Inspector General complaint against a police officer examining that matter—is highly concerning,” the chairman wrote.

Following some tedious back and forth, the IRS ultimately informed the Ohio resident more than a week after the initial house visit that the decedent had just one tax filing from seven years ago that was delinquent.

The incident comes after the IRS also paid a visit one month earlier to the home of Matt Taibbi, an independent journalist who was scheduled to testify to Congress about government censorship practices.

Jordan noted of that incident that the Judiciary Committee is “continuing to investigate the IRS’s reasons for visiting Mr. Taibbi’s home and whether the visit was conducted in an attempt to intimidate a witness before Congress.”
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