On Your Side Investigators: Tax return taken from wrong man - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

On Your Side Investigators: Tax return taken from wrong man

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

It's a mind-blowing case of mistaken identity, resulting in a man's tax refund being intercepted to pay-off somebody else's debt. Everybody knows what caused the blunder but no one will give the man his money.

Jason Wiggins has the bad luck of having the same name as another person who owed money to Dinwiddie General District Court. That person got convicted of driving on a suspended license and speeding and failed to pay his fines. That was the start of this Jason's nightmare.

He showed me papers where a total of $814.00 of his state tax refund was applied to payoff someone else's debt. Jason Wiggins was hit twice, once in 2009 and again in 2010.

Tax refund interception is a legal remedy governments and courts use to collect what's theirs, but Jason Wiggins says a worker's mistake somewhere in the chain made his hard earned refund fair game for seizure and Dinwiddie Courts should be looking for another Jason Wiggins.

"We have the same name but we're two different people," said Jason Wiggins.

He got copies of the tickets from the court clerk which shows what police wrote down off the driver's license of the man they arrested.

"He was born...1970. I was born in 1977," he said.
 
He's contacted the County Attorney, the Taxation Department, the Court Clerk and says he's tired of hearing the same thing over and over.

"'It's nothing we can do. It's nothing we can do.' Even though I've showed them different name, different birth date, different license number. I mean, different address. I've never even owned a Ford SUV that they have on this ticket," Wiggins explained.

Jason Lamont Wiggins can't even get a hearing before a judge in Dinwiddie. He petitioned the court and the judge marked his papers denied. Never saw his face.

"I'm a husband. I'm a father. I like to engage in family things. I go to work everyday. Obviously, I pay my taxes," Jason said.

NBC12 went to the address on the ticket hoping to clear this up and find the other Jason. A new family had bought the house. A neighbor says the Wiggins moved several years ago.

"It is not me," Jason said. "They still owe me $800.00 at the end of the day."

NBC12 just talked to the clerk of the court and she believes his story. She says the state will never take his money again. They've taken action to fix that. But he'll need a judge to get his refund.
       
The clerk told us the wrong social security number was attached to the records. Who did it, DMV or the Court? Jason says the court initiated the interception and benefited from his tax refund, both should be helping him.

"When it comes to retrieving the monies, it was so easy to take. But it's so hard to get back," Jason said.

The Court Clerk suggested he file a new petition. There's a different judge in charge now. We talked to Jason a few hours ago. He says, he will petition the court again.

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