ED Magedson – Founder
TaxResources, Inc.7803 Madison Avenue, Suite A Citrus Heights, California United States of America
TAX AUDIT DOES NOT WORK
I used TurboTax for my 2007 tax return. I've also used it in 2008. For 2009, I vow not use TurboTax again. If you use this tax preparation software, I suggest that you do not purchase the TaxAudit service from TaxResources as you will not receive the highest level of service as indicated in its website: We will meet with the auditor on your behalf and will defend you through the highest level of appeals, if necessary. You are better off consulting with a CPA to receive clarification in case of an audit. I received poor service from TaxResources. I also had to communicate with the IRS as the company refused to do it on my behalf. I suggest that you read any disclaimer before you purchase the membership.
I received notification from the IRS on July 5, 2009 for my 2007 tax return. I immediately called TaxResources on July 7, 2009 as I didn't know what to do. Since I purchased the membership for about $50, now was the time to put this service into good use. I was told that a TaxResources representative will contact me for further information. The rep contacted me by email/phone on July 16, more than a week after I reported the IRS notification. Then we corresponded until July 20 by email. After July 20, the next contact date was Aug. 4, 2009. This was a bit frustrating as the IRS needed a response by Aug. 5, 2009. The rep asked me to sign a power of attorney, requested my W-2s, and asked me to send my 1099 -- all these requests were made at noon and 1 day before she had to file a response to the IRS. It was 5 p.m. when I finally got all my paperwork in order to fax/email to her. The reps poor time management skills caused me to panic and scramble to get the documentations to her before the close of business.
POOR CUSTOMER SERVICE
The next day, the TaxResources rep told me I owe this much to the IRS. She could not provide me with documentation as to why she arrived at the number. She said it is company policy to not provide the client with any correspondence it makes to the IRS. Only when the case is closed will the client receive all the documentation. I felt her last-minute scramble to get the documentation prepared and submitted to the IRS the next day reflected poor customer service and lack of adequate representation. Because I did not feel she did a good job of reviewing my tax form, I hired a local CPA to review my tax return. The CPA's calculation was different from the TaxResources rep's calculation by $1000. Because of this, I asked TaxResources to pay the difference between what its rep calculated and what my CPA calculated. My CPA took the time to review my W-2s and he asked me questions along the way when examining my taxes. Because of the cost of hiring a CPA, I also asked TaxResources to pay for the cost of hiring the CPA as I felt its rep did not do a good job of representing my case.
BIASED RESPONSE FROM MANAGEMENT
When I called the TaxResources customer service about the discrepancy and the lack of customer service I received, somebody from management called me after 5 days. The manager, an EA, first justified the level of customer service by saying the company had been busy with about 300,000 new members who just purchased the TaxAudit service. In my mind, this is the reason that the company cannot serve individual customers effectively and efficiently.
The manager then indicated that he will be happy to review the tax return my CPA calculated. Even without looking at the return, he already inferred that the CPA probably did not enter the correct numbers that is why the principal amount I owed was smaller. When the manager reviewed the CPAs return, he called me to basically discredit everything the CPA did; this response was no surprise as he was already biased from the very beginning. I told the manager that I am not a CPA so whatever numbers he says the CPA entered incorrectly, I wouldn't be able to justify or defend why. At the end of the conversation, it was clear that he was not open to "listening" to my case; he talked the whole time to tell me that the CPA I hired entered the incorrect numbers and TaxResources was right, no matter what. I guess this is his way of telling me that his company will not pay me for hiring my CPA and the $1000 difference in my tax return that the CPA found.
PROMISES NOT MET
In addition to poor customer service, TaxResources tells you when you sign up that you will never have to deal with the IRS. In my second notification letter from the IRS, I asked the rep if she could write a letter of abatement for the interests and penalties because the excess contribution I made to my SEP IRA was not caught by the TurboTax software. She then told me that I have to write the letter as it is not their policy to make this request. This is frustrating as this is something the company did not disclose when I purchased the TaxAudit membership. I finally decided to communicate with the IRS directly and wrote the abatement letter. The TaxResources manager contacted the rep and asked her to write the abatement only after I have contacted customer service about this. Although this would have been helpful, it was too late as I already sent my letter to the IRS.
Now that I know how this TaxAudit works, I vow to not use TurboTax again (I purchased the Premier version), especially since the software did not catch all the errors in my return. Although the software gave me a 0 on the error check, the manager told me that I should have purchased the additional audit review for about $50 so a "live" individual could have caught the excess contribution I made to my SEP-IRA. My question is, for the price of the TurboTax software ($80) that you only use one time, shouldn't the TurboTax software catch this simple error? Purchasing the software, audit defense, and audit review would have cost around $180; it might have served me better if I used a CPA in the first place. All the hassle, stress, and poor responses I received from TaxResources, Inc. does not make it my while to use this company. So for those 300,000 individuals who purchased the TaxAudit membership, I highly recommend that you simply hire a CPA in the future as your best interest will be served in a timely and efficient manner. Someone will actually take the time to give a quality review of your income tax and he/she will not make you feel that you are just 1 out of 300,000. This intangible service is something that should matter for any organization that wants to maintain long-term relationships with its clients.
Helotes/San Antonio, TX
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/23/2009 09:09 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/TaxResources-Inc/Citrus-Heights-California-95610/TaxResources-Inc-TurboTax-Intuit-Inc-TaxAudit-service-does-not-work-will-not-use-it-a-513759. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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