Police Warn of Tax Lien Mail Scam

Published on September 02, 2020

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Arlington County Police Department is warning the public about scam mailings that threaten individuals with seizure of their wages and Social Security benefits to satisfy alleged non-payment of taxes. Recipients are instructed to call a toll-free number by a set date or further enforcement action will be taken against them.

The mailings use a fraudulent government seal and are sent from the "Benefits Suspension Unit, Arlington County, Public Judgement Records' and/or the 'Tax Processing Unit, Internal Processing Service, Arlington County, Public Judgement Records.' This office does not exist.

[caption id="attachment_26731" align="alignnone" width="300"]Scam mailing envelope Example of Scam Mailing[/caption]

Reporting Fraud to Police

If you have been a victim or target of a scam in Arlington County, report to police using the online crime report.
Additional Fraud Prevention Tips

Scammers may use various techniques to fool potential victims. Avoid becoming a victim by following these practices:

  • Be suspicious of any unsolicited phone calls, emails, mailings or in-person solicitations which request funds or claim that you owe money.

  • Never use a phone number provided to you from an individual making threats to verify their credibility. Use a verified phone number to contact a government agency if you're concerned you might owe money.

  • Avoid unusual payment methods. No government agency will instruct you to resolve your debt using a payment method such as Bitcoin, money wires, mailed cash or gift cards.

  • Keep your information private. Don't share your personal information with organizations you are unfamiliar with, don't have ties to and did not initiate contact with.

  • Take your time. If you are requested to act quickly or there is a stated emergency, it may be a scam. Scammers create a sense of urgency to get you to act impulsively.

  • If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.


For additional fraud prevention information, visit the police website.