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Don't get burned by debt collection scam



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August 16, 2017
Unfortunately, there are people out there who prey upon the honesty and integrity of others. Scammers know no boundaries, and their grubby fingers reach into all segments of the population. The internet and modern technology has increased the opportunities for scammers to anonymously fill their pockets with other people's hard-earned money.

The Michigan Department of Treasury is asking residents to be alert for a new scam that implies the federal government will pay their outstanding state tax debts or other state debts.

Within the last month, the state Treasury Department has noticed an increase in cases where individuals are attempting to pay their outstanding state debts with routing numbers from two U.S. Department of Treasury Bureaus—the Financial Management Service (FMS) and the Bureau of the Public Debt (BPD). Individuals are using these federal routing numbers with their Social Security Number as the checking account number and listing the bank as either the FMS or the BPD.

As a part of this scam, the U.S. Department of Treasury warns that groups are holding seminars throughout the United States that fraudulently teach attendees to use these federal routing numbers to resolve their outstanding government debts.

Deputy Treasurer Ann Good, who heads up the Treasury's Financial and Administrative Services Group says people who try to pay their state debts in this way will have their payment rejected. She says the Treasury will work with residents to resolve their outstanding debts.

Individuals who think they may have an outstanding state tax debt or other state debt are encouraged to call state Treasury Department's Office of Collections at 517-636-5265.

For more information about state tax debt or other state debt collections, go to www.michigan.gov/treasury.

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