MAR 05 2014


WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), a senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, co-sponsored legislation with Judiciary Committee colleague Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) to fight tax identity theft. The STOP Identity Theft Act of 2013, which passed the Senate Judiciary Committee, would help crack down on identity theft and protect victims:

Sessions: “I am pleased to work with Senator Klobuchar on this legislation to protect taxpayers from identity theft. This legislation will curb illegality, improve the investigative process, and will focus on criminals who steal identities in order to steal a lawful taxpayer’s refund from the IRS.”

Klobuchar: “Cases of tax identify theft have surged in recent years, wreaking havoc on peoples’ lives and costing taxpayers billions of dollars. This bipartisan bill would streamline law enforcement resources to better target and punish the criminals who are stealing peoples’ hard-earned money, and I will keep pushing to make sure it becomes law.”


In cases of widespread fraud across the country, criminals using stolen information such as Social Security numbers have been electronically filing false tax returns before the legitimate taxpayer files in order to steal the taxpayer’s refund. The victims often experience long delays in receiving their rightful refund or never receive it at all.

The STOP Identity Theft Act of 2013 would direct the Department of Justice to focus its resources in areas with a high rate of tax-return identity theft and to coordinate investigations with state and local law enforcement agencies. The bill would increase the maximum jail sentence on perpetrators from 15 to 20 years and expand the definition of a victim of identity theft to allow for prosecution in cases where organizations and businesses—not just individuals—are victims of fraud.