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kaveh2k said:   zcxvihoda here, straight from their website.

Our Guarantees

"The dedication and expertise of our Tax Professionals is yours when you file your return and after. You will have our 100% Accuracy Guarantee and a commitment to supporting you in the unlikely event of an audit.

Our Tax Professionals believe service is everything. That's why we have a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. That means you don't pay unless you're satisfied with our work. Even if you had your tax return prepared somewhere else, you can still experience the best Tax Professionals at work. Just come in and get a Free Second Look« Review1. We'll check your returns going back one, two or three years (any or all) for any missed tax deductions or credits. We find money others miss."


so to answer your question, NO you don't have to pay if your not happy


Thanks a lot!! Your answer is very helpful!!!

dawndelion said:   It has been 10 years since I worked at HR Block, but at that time we did not require you to pay unless we filed the return. It happened pretty frequently that someone would leave and not pay after finding out how much it would cost after we did all of the data entry. It's Block's stupid policy of us not being allowed to give an official estimate of fees. We could only say that the fee varied depending on the complexity of your return and they would send in secret shoppers to test what we were telling customers about fees. As long as they haven't changed the payment policy (we did not have anyone sign anything at all), then I wouldn't feel bad about not paying - it happened all the time.

ETA - I 2nd the recommendation to go to a private CPA. I was an accountant by training, but many of the other "tax prep experts" were homemakers, retail clerks, and others who sat through the class to get the job. The test we took to get hired was a joke and the instructor was pretty much helping the slackers answer the questions. They pay so poorly that anyone who is really good at it is going to work for a CPA firm after seeing what a joke Block is (that's what I did). Good luck!


Thanks a lot for your experience from working at H&R Block. I also appreciate your recommendation to go to a private CPA. I'll look for one.

dawndelion said:   It has been 10 years since I worked at HR Block, but at that time we did not require you to pay unless we filed the return. It happened pretty frequently that someone would leave and not pay after finding out how much it would cost after we did all of the data entry. It's Block's stupid policy of us not being allowed to give an official estimate of fees. We could only say that the fee varied depending on the complexity of your return and they would send in secret shoppers to test what we were telling customers about fees. As long as they haven't changed the payment policy (we did not have anyone sign anything at all), then I wouldn't feel bad about not paying - it happened all the time.

ETA - I 2nd the recommendation to go to a private CPA. I was an accountant by training, but many of the other "tax prep experts" were homemakers, retail clerks, and others who sat through the class to get the job. The test we took to get hired was a joke and the instructor was pretty much helping the slackers answer the questions. They pay so poorly that anyone who is really good at it is going to work for a CPA firm after seeing what a joke Block is (that's what I did). Good luck!


My experience with H&R Block is very much consistent with what is described here. The people who work there have absolutely no clue what they are doing and they are instructed to rely solely on the faulty software they are given. But even not so complicated tax situations can derail any software guidance because of the abundant ambiguity of the U.S. tax code. Simple definitions need to be looked up in instructions and a cognizant human needs to make simple decisions as to what numbers to enter in what fields.

I am still dealing with the mistakes they made on my returns from years ago. I keep finding new ways in which they screwed up and they still can't get it right. I have wasted so many hours sitting there with them and explaining what they should already know. Why, oh, why did I ever pay them money?!

zcxvihoda said:   dawndelion said:   It has been 10 years since I worked at HR Block, but at that time we did not require you to pay unless we filed the return. It happened pretty frequently that someone would leave and not pay after finding out how much it would cost after we did all of the data entry. It's Block's stupid policy of us not being allowed to give an official estimate of fees. We could only say that the fee varied depending on the complexity of your return and they would send in secret shoppers to test what we were telling customers about fees. As long as they haven't changed the payment policy (we did not have anyone sign anything at all), then I wouldn't feel bad about not paying - it happened all the time.

ETA - I 2nd the recommendation to go to a private CPA. I was an accountant by training, but many of the other "tax prep experts" were homemakers, retail clerks, and others who sat through the class to get the job. The test we took to get hired was a joke and the instructor was pretty much helping the slackers answer the questions. They pay so poorly that anyone who is really good at it is going to work for a CPA firm after seeing what a joke Block is (that's what I did). Good luck!


Thanks a lot for your experience from working at H&R Block. I also appreciate your recommendation to go to a private CPA. I'll look for one.

Don't expect a good CPA to be that much cheaper so please don't come back and post : CPA charging too much money, do I need to pay them?

How complex is your return ? When I came to the US in 2001 I did my first return in 2002 myself (using software). Admittely it was not overly complex (just standard things like 2 wage incomes, married, mortgage etc.). If yours is just standard give it a short using software and see how far off you are from the H&R Block. Its free to try on most major web sites of the larger vendors (TurboTax etc.) until you file.

Do you understand why the more expensive option did have you pay less taxes ? I assume it might be filing jointly vs separate but this is just a guess from my side.

I let people know my fees in advance. It makes it a lot easier for both parties.

Tax preparation companies are spending millions a year to lobby against the simplifying of taxes (so that you wouldn't need companies like H&R Block), so, you maybe can use that to ease your ethical dilemma.

I did this years ago. They can't quote you a fee until every thing is in the system. At that time you decide whether or not to accept the fee and let them file for you. If they don't file, they don't charge. If they wanted to collect for work done instead of filing, they would have a sign with an hourly rate for their work.

You wasted their time so you should pay them.

My brother is 31 years old and brutally uneducated about money. He just got a job that will eventually pay him 100K+ so I've got some work to do. A few weeks ago he paid a WalMart tax guy $300 to file his extremely simple return. I ripped into him and he said 'It's okay, I got $400 back!!!'. Like I said, lots of work to be done here.

Edit: If HR won't give you an estimate before they start then I don't think you're obligated to pay them. Doesn't make sense...it's like a car mechanic not giving any kind of estimate.

Its the person who did your taxes that gets shorted. H&R Block pays on commission, it is usually a small % of the fee 10% to 20%. Also sometimes if you ask the manager will discount it or bring in a coupon from another tax outfit and they will match it. This will save you money and not screw the employee.

If you don't want to screw the guy that did the work for you, give him a tip

scrouds said:   If you don't want to screw the guy that did the work for you, give him a tip

I very much doubt that corporate would allow that.

zcxvihoda said:   I don't think so. I was told that with one scenario it's gonna be $400, with another it's $500. Of course with $500 the return amount was bigger. (actually, the due amount was less...)What bothers most about this thread is not that the OP was asking if he should pay H&R Block (according to their business model he doesn't have to).
What really bothers me is H&R Block telling the OP that for $400 they will prepare a return with a small refund, but if you pay them $500 they will provide a return with a larger refund.

They might as well have told the OP that for $400 we'll fill out some forms, but if you want us to do it right (assuming they can) it will cost you $500.

Such action is despicable and immoral - especially when such fees are disclosed after the fact.

mikeres said:   zcxvihoda said:   I don't think so. I was told that with one scenario it's gonna be $400, with another it's $500. Of course with $500 the return amount was bigger. (actually, the due amount was less...)What bothers most about this thread is not that the OP was asking if he should pay H&R Block (according to their business model he doesn't have to).
What really bothers me is H&R Block telling the OP that for $400 they will prepare a return with a small refund, but if you pay them $500 they will provide a return with a larger refund.

They might as well have told the OP that for $400 we'll fill out some forms, but if you want us to do it right (assuming they can) it will cost you $500.

Such action is despicable and immoral - especially when such fees are disclosed after the fact.


Based on what I know, H&R Block corporate would not allow this and would shut it down pretty quick so as not to tarnish the entire organization which would invite a look from the feds.

on a related topic, I receive 300 different 1099-div forms per year. 8 cents here, 1.12 there, etc. I purchased a single share of nearly the entire S&P500 and had the certificates sent to me. (totally OCD, I know)

Since H&R Block charges per page, it's been VERY tempting to take the whole box in to them to have them prepare my taxes. They charge per form but as others have said don't disclose this until the very end. If they refuse, then I can sue them for false advertising, since their TV commercials say go ahead, bring us your toughest tax challenge we won't refuse anything.

They don't calculate the fee till the end or require you to pay , so you are free not to use their services once presented with the price quote to file

milkandcookies said:   mikeres said:   zcxvihoda said:   I don't think so. I was told that with one scenario it's gonna be $400, with another it's $500. Of course with $500 the return amount was bigger. (actually, the due amount was less...)What bothers most about this thread is not that the OP was asking if he should pay H&R Block (according to their business model he doesn't have to).
What really bothers me is H&R Block telling the OP that for $400 they will prepare a return with a small refund, but if you pay them $500 they will provide a return with a larger refund.

They might as well have told the OP that for $400 we'll fill out some forms, but if you want us to do it right (assuming they can) it will cost you $500.

Such action is despicable and immoral - especially when such fees are disclosed after the fact.


Based on what I know, H&R Block corporate would not allow this and would shut it down pretty quick so as not to tarnish the entire organization which would invite a look from the feds.


I'm not sure how I understand how they do the whole 'Pay us more and we'll get you a larger refund" thing. Obviously, they're doing something wrong one way or the other, yes? But, I'v heard multiple people tell me the same thing.

I recommend OP try to find a good, preferably small-town, CPA or tax prep. The guy I've used for years works in my home town. I mail him everything and answer questions via phone and email. He charges by the forms, but it's crazy cheap. I need several forms, and he charges me $45 most years. When I was in college, it was $20. Some friends of mine use him and are self employed, own two small businesses, some rental property, etc. They paid $130 last year, I don't about this year though. I double check with turbo-tax free edition. He usually finds one thing that I missed.

pbmc said:   The CPA charged $600 per year and I think it was a bargain. Plus the fees are deductable on the next year's forms.
Usually the fees are not deductible. You have to itemize and then only the eligible items over 2% of your AGI are deductible.

http://www.irs.gov/publications/p529/ar02.html

If they wanted payment they would have asked for it before you left. Sounds to me like you only pay if you have them file. Why don't you call and ask?
If they want you to pay anyway, then go in and pay and have them file. If they don't want you to pay then do whatever you want.

Infinion said:   milkandcookies said:   mikeres said:   zcxvihoda said:   I don't think so. I was told that with one scenario it's gonna be $400, with another it's $500. Of course with $500 the return amount was bigger. (actually, the due amount was less...)What bothers most about this thread is not that the OP was asking if he should pay H&R Block (according to their business model he doesn't have to).
What really bothers me is H&R Block telling the OP that for $400 they will prepare a return with a small refund, but if you pay them $500 they will provide a return with a larger refund.

They might as well have told the OP that for $400 we'll fill out some forms, but if you want us to do it right (assuming they can) it will cost you $500.

Such action is despicable and immoral - especially when such fees are disclosed after the fact.


Based on what I know, H&R Block corporate would not allow this and would shut it down pretty quick so as not to tarnish the entire organization which would invite a look from the feds.


I'm not sure how I understand how they do the whole 'Pay us more and we'll get you a larger refund" thing. Obviously, they're doing something wrong one way or the other, yes? But, I'v heard multiple people tell me the same thing.

I recommend OP try to find a good, preferably small-town, CPA or tax prep. The guy I've used for years works in my home town. I mail him everything and answer questions via phone and email. He charges by the forms, but it's crazy cheap. I need several forms, and he charges me $45 most years. When I was in college, it was $20. Some friends of mine use him and are self employed, own two small businesses, some rental property, etc. They paid $130 last year, I don't about this year though. I double check with turbo-tax free edition. He usually finds one thing that I missed.


There are many scenarios where it's possible. The simple part is that for $400, they just file using the standard deduction. For $500, it's a few more forms hence the higher fee, but you itemize and get a bigger return. Not that big a mystery. The other part is that if he already has all the forms need to file his return, he can just file his return. The real question is if it was done right and if he really did get all the forms he needs to file.

I'm back. Lots of new doubts. I will answer all, although I won't or can't reveal all the details.

1. H&R Block told me that there is no fee until I file with them. So I'll not file with them.

2. $400 filing fee is when we file jointly. $500 filing fee is when we file separately. Normally, there filing jointly saves more taxes, but with some "special" things behind, filing separately would save more taxes. I'm not sure if that "special" thing is actually feasible for us or not. I think not.

zcxvihoda said:   I'm back. Lots of new doubts. I will answer all, although I won't or can't reveal all the details.

1. H&R Block told me that there is no fee until I file with them. So I'll not file with them.

2. $400 filing fee is when we file jointly. $500 filing fee is when we file separately. Normally, there filing jointly saves more taxes, but with some "special" things behind, filing separately would save more taxes. I'm not sure if that "special" thing is actually feasible for us or not. I think not.

Doesnt look like you are capable of handling this on your own. Just get it done with H&R Block. Or for $400-$500, you could also have it done with a real tax professional.

Have it done with a real tax professional if you must. But don't do it with H&R Block. They make mistakes that even the average 5th grader doesn't make.

OliverQuackenbush said:   jwillgoesfast said:   Although I've never wanted to go to these "fast food" tax places, when I was at WalMart and saw the "tax professional" behind the desk helping someone was the same lady who had been my cashier at big lots the day before, I couldn't help but feel bad for anyone who would pay for that tax service.

Wow you were very lucky to get checked out by such an overqualified cashier. Thats like Donald Trump himself working the registration desk at one of his hotels!
You shouldn't feel sorry for people if you can be seen at WalMart one day and Big Lots the next lol.


Dang, I haven't been pwnd like that in a long time



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