Tax preparation pointers

Mar 7, 2018, 12:00 PM | Updated: Feb 7, 2023, 11:21 am

SALT LAKE CITY – Have you jumped into your 2017 tax return yet? Here are three tips that will protect you and your refund from fraud this tax season.


If you’re going to hire someone to do your taxes, choose carefully. The IRS says we are responsible, even if the preparer goofed on our tax return.

Make sure the whomever you choose has a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) from the IRS. You’ll find it on along with a searchable list of preparers who face suspension or other actions.  Check the Better Business Bureau for complaints.  In other words, make sure they have a good track record.


We have until April 17 this year to file our taxes. But we shouldn’t wait until Tax Day.

The risk for tax return fraud has gone way, way up after the Equifax data breach, where hackers stole personal and financial info on 143 million Americans.  You can avoid a stolen refund by beating the scammers to the punch. File as early as you can and don’t file anything on public WiFi.


Bad guys also pose as tax agents and call threatening people with arrest for past-due taxes. They’ve raked in more than $54 million, so far, with this scam.

To make their scam seem more legitimate, the criminals often “spoof” their caller IDs to make their calls look like they’re coming from the IRS. They’ll often demand to be paid in gift cards, money orders or prepaid debit cards.

Remember, the IRS never calls or emails to demand immediate payment.


If you made $66,000 or less last year, you can file your taxes online for free. A dozen tax prep companies like H&R Block, TaxAct and TaxSlayer have partnered with the IRS’ Free File program.

KSL 5 TV Live


Cave filled with clear water...


You know the most visited, but here are the least visited US national parks in 2023

There are no roads and no trails in America’s least-visited national park. Just vast wilderness. Alaska’s Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve, located 200 miles (322 kilometers) north of Fairbanks, stretches over 8.4 million acres.

8 hours ago

(File photo)...

Tamara Vaifanua

Free financial workshop teaches how to budget, invest

When dealing with your finances, you hear a lot about budgeting, investing, and credit scores. It can all be overwhelming.

13 hours ago

FILE - A sign advertises Yeezy shoes made by Adidas at Kickclusive, a sneaker resale store, in Para...

Associated Press

Adidas sells another batch of Yeezy sneakers left over from breakup with Ye

Shoe and sports clothing maker Adidas says it has started a third sale of the Yeezy sneakers it was left with after severing ties with Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West.

1 day ago

This photo provided by RR Auction shows a watch melted during the Aug.6, 1945 bombing of Hiroshima....

Steve LeBlanc, Associated Press

A watch that melted during the atomic blast over Hiroshima, Japan, sells for more than $31,000

A watch melted during the Aug. 6, 1945, bombing of Hiroshima, Japan, sold at auction Thursday for more than $31,000.

3 days ago

(Photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images)...

Associated Press

Toyota recalls 280,000 pickups and SUVs because transmissions can deliver power even when in neutral

The recall is to fix a transmission problem that can let the vehicles creep forward while in neutral.

4 days ago

A sunset spectacle featuring two mitten-shaped rock formations crosses Monument Valley Tribal Park ...

Michael Phillis, Associated Press

Native American tribes gain new authority to stop unwanted hydropower projects

The U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has rejected several proposed hydropower projects on the largest Native American reservation in the U.S. The commission has also created a policy that essentially gives tribes early veto power over such projects.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

Tax preparation pointers