MISSOULA — The Montana Department of Revenue has seen a sharp increase in the amount of tax fraud committed over the past three years.
The Missoulian reports that the Department of Revenue stopped more than 1,647 fraudulent returns in 2014, stopping more than $1.7 million from illegally being handed out.
In 2013 the department stopped 1,250 returns for more than $1.4 million and in 2012, 897 returns worth more than $760,000 were caught.
Officials say the increase can be attributed to identity theft, where a criminal uses someone else’s identity to file a fake tax return and get a refund. They say it is safe to assume more fraudulent returns have been missed.
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