Melody Herman is caught in a frustrating fight.
She explains, "Our taxes are taken, can't find them, they're missing. No one knows where they're at. It's not good."
By filing her taxes Melody learned a woman in Michigan stole her identity and is wreaking havoc costing her her tax refund.
She says, "Last year it was $8,000, the year before that it was almost six."
It's making life very hard for Melody and her husband. The financial toll is severe she shares.
"I have three jobs, he has three. It's not fun."
Bays says, "If you've become a victim of identity theft it's a very difficult situation for everyone involved. And there's really not ONE place to turn."
First file a police report. Bays says there's a law in place to be certain you can do that right away
"There's a statute on the books in Oklahoma that says the county where you live you can file a police report."
to get a packet of information that spells out each step to take including contacting your creditors so the breach is noted in your file.
Finally reach out to each of the three credit bureaus. They'll put a fraud alert on your account for free. And for less than $10 you can place a security freeze but be aware of exactly what that does says Bays.
"With security freeze no one can take out a line of credit in your name, including you. If you planned on getting credit any time soon you might just stay with fraud alert because it takes a little time to get that freeze off once it's on."
As Melody continues her battle she says she has tons of documents locked up ready to be shredded.
"I've got probably five boxes. It needs to be done."
She says she won't take any risks and plans to be ID theft-proof going forward.
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