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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Federal Court Bars Alabama Tax Return Preparer from Preparing Returns for Others

Return Preparer Allegedly Overstated Refunds by Falsely Claiming Dependents

A federal court in Montgomery, Alabama, has permanently barred a Montgomery tax preparer from preparing federal tax returns for others, the Justice Department announced today.

The complaint alleged that Jenika Williams prepared returns that falsely claimed or inflated taxpayers’ income tax refunds by using social security numbers and other identifying information of third parties to falsely claim dependents in order to overstate the taxpayers’ claim to the Earned Income Tax Credit.

Williams, the suit alleges, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States, wire fraud and aggravated identity theft.  Altogether, the loss to the U.S. Treasury from Williams’ activities may exceed $1 million.  The permanent injunction was entered by U.S. District Judge W. Keith Watkins for the Middle District of Alabama after Williams failed to respond to the lawsuit.

Return preparer fraud is one of the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) Dirty Dozen Tax Scams for 2014.  The IRS has some tips on their website for choosing a tax preparer.  In the past decade, the Justice Department’s Tax Division has obtained injunctions against hundreds of unscrupulous tax preparers.  Information about these cases is available on the Justice Department website.

Related Materials:

United States v. Tonja Renee Toney, et al.
Permanent Injunction Against Jenika Williams

Press Release Number: 
Updated July 7, 2016