July 15 was the final day to file taxes after the Trump Administration extended the deadline.
Americans who filed refunds after April 15, will also get an interest payment.
Taxpayers who made under a certain amount were able to file using the IRS Free File tool.
In 2016, a study found tax preparers cost low-income taxpayers approximately $1.75 billion in Earned Income Tax Credit.
(NewsReady.com) – When Americans walk into a tax-preparation company they expect a certain level of honesty. Unfortunately, for many, that’s not what they received from five major tax-filing corporations, according to one state. In fact, the businesses are being accused of intentionally hiding information from taxpayers in order to enrich themselves.
Sleazy Business Practices
On July 15, the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYSDFS) released a report detailing allegedly sleazy business practices by five major tax-filing companies. Authorities are accusing the companies of “deliberately” hiding the IRS’ Free File Program from taxpayers who earned less than $69,000 from preparing and filing their paperwork for free. The corporations on the list are:
- Drake Enterprises
- Intuit (which owns TurboTax)
- H&R Block
The Jig Is Up
The investigation was sparked by a ProPublica report. According to a 2019 article, Intuit was able to hide TurboTax Free File, which uses the IRS’ program, by adding code to its site that directed search engines to not list the option on the search results.
ProPublica discovered the issue after the organization asked its Twitter followers about their own experiences filing taxes. One user, Larissa Williams, responded with a screenshot pointing out the code.
TurboTax is setting the "free" filing page to "noindex" in the web code, making it much harder for people trying to find the page. Without a direct link, it would be VERY hard to find that page searching the internet. Shady. pic.twitter.com/zFC1Djm0Gp
— Larissa Williams (@rissawinkwink) April 22, 2019
If this is true, that means a countless number of customers may have been cheated out of their hard-earned money because their tax-preparer deceived them. That would be an incredible breach of trust for not just the people who were eligible for the Free File program, but also others who used the companies’ services. Now those people might be rightfully questioning whether or not they’ve been the victim of some scheme.
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