Individuals pretending to be IRS agents are making their rounds in West Michigan

Posted at 10:36 PM, Jan 05, 2015
and last updated 2015-01-05 22:37:05-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.-- It's a phone message that's put a few people in West Michigan on high alert.  A potential scam that authorities say you need to be aware of, so you don’t fall victim.

“I would like for somebody to take care of it and knock it off,” said a frustrated Marge Arntz who’s had an individual pretending to be an IRS agent contact her several times.

It’s an automated message, supposedly from the IRS, claiming it's a final notice to pay back taxes before a lawsuit is filed against them.

These calls have been happening from Kalamazoo county, Isabella county, Kent county, and places in between. It’s hard to say how or if they're connected.

Terrie Joslyn and her mother, Marge Arntz, check their messages every single day, but a few weeks ago they heard one that sent them into a panic.

The message says,  “hello we have been trying to reach you. This call is your final noticed from the IRS, Internal Revenue Service, the reason for this call is the IRS is filing a lawsuit against you.”

A potential lawsuit Terrie or Marge never heard a word about before the message was left.

Terrie and Marge received that call on December 17th, but it didn’t' stop with just one.

“I have received three calls, and they are all the same message,” said Joslyn.

After the initial shock and multiple calls, they realized it didn't make any sense.

“I don't like it because, I never had trouble with the IRS,” said Arntz.

IRS scams are common as of late, and some people have fallen victim. In September,  Kalamazoo Township officers warned about an fake IRS agent demanding $8,000 thousand dollars of back taxes or else the individual would be arrested. Similar cases were reported in November in Battle Creek, and December in Isabella County.

Michigan State Police sent out a release a few days after Terrie and Marge were scammed reminding people the IRS won't contact people by phone. They rely on mail, only. An arrest warrant will never be issued upon immediacy of a call asking for money.

Fox 17 News called the number back for Marge and Terrie. No one answered, and there was no message machine claiming it was an IRS office number.

Suspicious activity should be reported to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484, or a report can be filed online on the IRS website as well.