ED Magedson – Founder
J.K. Harris & Company4995 Lacross Road, Suite 1800 North Charleston, South Carolina United States of America
I worked for JK Harris for 1 1/2 yrs & quit after deciding I did not want to work for a company like them (I also went back to school to obtain my Master's Degree).
I would strongly suggest you deal with the IRS directly to try and resolve your tax liability. The average JK Harris client pays $2,000 for services some who only owe the IRS $5,000!! The IRS frowns upon taxpayers who owe them money and wants to only pay them pennies on the dollar but can pay hundreds of dollars per month to a company to help them reduce their debt. In my opinion, more than half of the client's who contract for assistance still end up with their debt after services have been rendered because it is extremely hard to get the IRS to accept an Offer in Compromise.
Think of it this way, you get a loan for $50,000 with interest it is $60,000. When the payment is due you go to the loan officer with only $10,000 to pay off the $60,000 debt. Before accepting that money from you he would want to know if there is any other way to obtain the full amount owed. The IRS works the same way, by submitting and Offer in Compromise you are basically telling them I owe you $60,000 but only want to pay you $10,000, before agreeing to accept that money they will investigate to make sure $10,000 is all they will ever be able to receive from you for the next 10 years. More than likely it isn't so they won't accept your Offer in Compromise.
The Case Specialist will tell you that the Offer in Compromise is based on your current situation, it sort of is but it isn't. If you have received money since your debt was first occured the IRS will investigate to determine how that money was spent. For example, you owed the IRS $10,000 in 2003 & got a second mortgage on your home for $50,000 in 2004. Instead of paying the IRS their money you buy a new car & improved your home. Although your current situation makes you qualify for an Offer in Compromise the IRS will more than likely not accept your Offer in Compromise because the funds you used to purchase a new vehicle and improving your home could've been sent to them to pay off your debt in 2004. The IRS views themselves as #1, they believe they should be paid before anyone else!!
Please remember the "consultants" you meet with are sales people, they earn commission, their goal is to sign you up for services!! Please read the contract (front and back) if you decide to cancel services after a certain amount of DAYS JK Harris will retain an administrative fee which could be hundreds of dollars which means you won't receive a refund.
If you are unhappy with your Case Specialist or how your case is being handled, demand to speak with a Supervisor or Client Advocacy. Client advocay will contact the Supervisor or the VP of that department & you will get help!!
JK Harris does help some client's but that ratio is very low. If you are employed and have income left over after deducting your necessary expenses, the IRS will not accept an Offer in Compromise. If you are under a certain age (I would say 50) and have a college degree or is able to pay the amount owed before the expiration date the IRS will not accept your Offer in Compromise. If it is accepted, they will take your tax refund for 2 years and you cannot owe them money for 5 yrs. or you will default the agreement which means you will once again have a tax liability.
JK Harris does not guarantee the acceptance of any Offer in Compromise, if an Offer in Compromise is submitted to the IRS and rejected, they will not give you your money back because they have fulfilled the contract. Remember, you are contracting to have an Offer in Compromise prepared, not accepted. That's why I am urging you to read the contract BEFORE signing it.
I would strongly suggest dealing with the IRS on your own but if you decide to hire JK Harris or any other tax firm please do your homework!! Call them everyday if you have to to check on the status of your case (they should call you first but most of the time they don't, the average Case Specialist at JKH has over 200 client's. There are usually 10 people on a team which means that one team is serving apprx. 2,000 clients). If progress is not being made on your case ask to speak with upper management, if you don't receive a phone call from upper management within 24 hours cancel services or speak with Client Advocacy who will ensure you speak with upper management (sometimes the case specialist will tell you they will have the supervisor call you but some of them don't inform the supervisor).
If you are unhappy with the company, file a complaint with the BBB (and follow up on it) or have the news media in your town run a story on JKH. The one thing JKH hates is bad publicity!!!
Most of my client's for whom I prepared Offer in Compromises for had their Offers accepted or were put into Currently not Collectable because I was honest with them. If I reviewed their financial information & saw their Offer in Compromise would not be accepted I would tell them before proceeding so they could cancel & get their money back. Unfortunately, some people didn't listen but most of them did.
I had to choose between doing something that was morally right or making good money. I chose to do the right thing morally. A part of me misses the job because the money was good & I actually helped my clients (which some members of my team were horrible at doing). I am now back to my struggling college student life but I would not go back to JKH if it was the last job on earth!!
If you have any questions or it there is anyway I can be off assistance to you please let me know!!
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/09/2009 01:17 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/jk-harris-company/north-charleston-south-carolina-29020/advertising-deceptivej-k-harris-companyj-k-harris-company-former-7a83bhtm-492296. 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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