I could tell the long version of this story, but I’ll just give you the gist of it, which is still painfully long and aggravating.
In March we went to Jackson-Hewitt to file our taxes because we had purchased a home in 2012 and I wanted to make sure we were not missing anything tax-related. The woman there was going warp-speed with her calculator and the next day she called me to say our tax return had been rejected. Another return under my SS# had already been filed! She suspected identity theft, and suggested I call the IRS to find out why my return had already been filed. (Why anyone would steal my identity to pay my taxes, I can’t imagine.) I sat on the phone for a couple hours at work and finally came to the conclusion that there had been some sort of mistake; my return had not been filed. I called the JH lady back, said they have no record of our return. She repeated our vital info back to us and immediately I caught her when she said my social security number wrong. She corrected it, sent it back in, and it was accepted.
The next day I tore off the tab from our return that says “return with payment” and sent in our payment. A couple weeks later the check cleared, and taxes were over for another year.
Then I received a letter in the mail today stating my taxes were two months overdue and fines were accumulating. Knowing very well that I had in fact paid our taxes, I sat on the phone with the IRS for another two hours, speaking to various people about the predicament. Luckily I had the wrong social security number handy to give them, and sure enough, it had counted towards someone else’s taxes. No red flags or anything came up when a check from someone else arrived in an amount that didn’t match what they owed? Apparently name means nothing and the only thing they check is the SS# when depositing checks. Amazingly they were able to help and switch it to go towards ours. Well, it should post in 2-3 weeks anyway. And I will say the last woman I spoke with was very competent.
So basically my plan to go to JH to make our lives a little less hectic at tax season wound up costing us a couple hundred for the tax preparation and another four hours on the phone with the IRS. I will be writing them a nasty letter and hoping for a refund of some sort!