Philanthropy at the University

Mailing Address:
Office of Development
P.O. Box 1321
Houston, TX 77251-1321
Physical Address:
Office of Development
7000 Fannin, Suite 1200
Houston, TX 77030
Phone: 713-500-3200
Fax: 713-500-3052

Welcome to UTHealth Gift Planning

Thank you for your interest in UTHealth. Our hope is to serve you and your family with helpful information. We have an increasing number of friends who now are benefiting from life income gifts, gift annuities, and other plans. Thank you for taking the time to explore the benefits of gift planning.

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Saturday February 23, 2019

Washington News

Washington Hotline

IRS Cautions - Avoid "Ghost" Tax Preparers

As taxpayers gather their W-2s, Forms 1099, charitable gift receipts and other financial information, tax filing season is now in full gear. In IR-2019-9, the IRS cautioned taxpayers not to use tax preparers who refuse to sign the taxpayer's return. These individuals are called "ghost" preparers, because their names are not on the tax returns.

The IRS requires each paid preparer to have a 2019 Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN). The paid preparer includes his or her PTIN and signs the tax return. For e-filed returns, the paid preparer may use a digital signature.

Ghost preparers often violate many rules and ethical practices. Preparers may promise an oversized refund or charge a fee based on a percentage of the refund. Some will increase a taxpayer's income in order to qualify for the earned income tax credit (EITC) or create false deductions to lower taxes.

The IRS urges taxpayers to be certain the refund is directed to the taxpayer's bank account and not to the preparer's account. If the refund is sent to the tax preparer's account, both the preparer and the refund may disappear.

The "Choosing a Tax Professional" page on www.IRS.gov explains the proper tax preparer credentials and qualifications. Many tax preparers are also listed on the IRS' "Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications."


Published February 8, 2019
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