Report: #277790

Complaint Review: The Tax Club

  • Submitted: Mon, October 08, 2007
  • Updated: Sun, September 01, 2013
  • Reported By: Tampa Florida
  • The Tax Club
    Empire State Builiding, 350 5th Ave.,
    New York, New York
    United States of America

The Tax Club The Tax Club is a COMPLETE SCAM - Urgent message to ALL ! New York New York

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: The Tax Club is a total ripoff. **Contact information of people to complain to INSIDE!**

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

In October, 2007 under high presuure tatics deployed by D. Fennell a new S-Corp I formed for consultanting services was taken a ride for a ride with lies and false facts.

The Tax Club took me for $1,000.00 with future online payments at 30 day intervals of $1,000.00 each. The agreement which was in writting, was for a $4,000.00 setup fee for "ALL Services" with no additainal service charges ever !.

Within 7 days, I was approched for over $4,000 more by various departments at the Tax Club. The memebrship was terminated and I have demanded a full refund which was acknowledged.

My bank in view of dozens of ripoff reports has processed a credit back to my account and intends to follow-up what it says are dozens of Fruad reports.

If you have had conatct with this company, do yourself a favor and get out NOW!

Rbowen Tampa, Florida

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/08/2007 04:12 PM and is a permanent record located here: 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

The Tax Club is a total ripoff. **Contact information of people to complain to INSIDE!**

AUTHOR: The Tax Club - (U.S.A.)

Let me start by saying I worked at The Tax Club for one month. It is a total scam. I apologize to anyone who has lost money to them. I have been meaning to write this for a long time, and hopefully spare some people the disaster of getting involved with a company like The Tax Club. I will try to divulge everything I know about the company in order to try to help you guys out. I will start with my experience there.

Getting Hired:
When I was hired, things already seemed a little fishy but I thought I would give it a try. During my interview, the company portrayed themselves as a company like H&R Block, but geared towards small business start-ups. I would be calling up potential clients and getting them to sign up for financial services corporation setup, tax preparation, etc. It seemed like any other telemarketing job, only the pay was MUCH better. For every client picked up, I would receive 15% of the total sale, and 20% after the quota was met for the week. At a minimum of $1018 a package, for every person who signed up for the package, I would make $150. This was on top of a low base salary of $25,000 dollars. The interviewer told me we were expected to make about 7-8 sales a week. I thought to myself, wow, that is over a thousand dollars bonus a week, this seems too good to be true. I fell for the trap anyways. On my first day, I was very enthusiastic. From talking to other salesman, I knew that it was very possible to make a great salary from this job. What other sales job could earn you $80,000-150,000 annually?

The first thing I learned was that we refer to ourselves as Tax Advisors. Other names that we're commonly used were Small Business Advisor, Business Advisor, and Senior Business Advisor. Let me tell you, only a few of the people in the sales room knew anything more than the basics regarding taxes; I asked my boss a relatively basic question and he could not even answer it. You shouldn't even go there with them! You're wasting time with that! Get to the credit card!! was the common response. Training consisted of reading scripts and listening in on others calls. We were told a lot of things to say that really amount to no informationthe more information we could spit out to sound legitimate and confuse our clients, the more likely they would be duped. A large percent of the time people were making up answers or simply going in circles. With all that being said, I started making phone calls the third day I was there.

The basic phone call:
I have posted the scripts at the end of this so you can see what was being fed to us. Literally, word for word. Most of the salesmen would not know what to do if the conversation steered off the script, bar a few experienced salesmen who could wing it. The first step of the call was to associate The Tax Club with another company that the potential customer was already familiar with, such as a forum or conference that they attended, or a website used to register a business. These included but were not limited to:

The Learning Annex
Legal Zoom
Wealth Intelligence Academy
Stores Online

This included all real estate seminars, stock investment seminars, ebay seminars, and the like. Once we let consumers know that we were working in conjunction with these (somewhat) legitimate establishments (note: I strongly believe that The Tax Club is hardly associated with any of these companies, they just buy lists of participants), it was easier to convince them that we were there to help. We would try to force them into thinking that they would save a boatload of money by incorporating and filing taxes as a small business. This is where we would dazzle them with more terms than we could understand ourselves, even if they didn't make sense. A large part was making it seem like there was a lot of work to be done, when in fact it is actually a very simple process that would only save you money if you had a successful business.

The reality:
The Tax Club provides almost no real serviceseverything that is promisedhelping incorporate, help with filing taxes, and UNLIMITED CONSULTATION WITH A TEAM OF ADVISORS, was really a false front for substandard software, and more sales calls. A business plan, which is included in the package, actually costs about $600 extra dollars (I would NEVER trust a company like this to write a business plan). The Tax Club Promise, a promise that if the company did not save you at lease $1000 dollars off your previous years taxes they would fully refund you, basically nulls itself in the fine print. First of all if you try to claim that money, first they try to find you liable, blaming you for missing a meeting (which was actually another sales call). If you did not miss any of the scheduled meetings, the fine print protects themthe full refund comes as $1000 dollars worth of tax assistance. What does that even mean? You weren't satisfied, sorry! Unfortunately the only thing we can offer you is tax advice.

I could not work there because of morals. I have stolen money from wonderful people for a company that thrives on hard-earned cash, with no product to sell. DO NOT GET INVOLVED WITH THE TAX CLUB! They are full of horses**t, and I am surprised they are a legal company. If you have already gotten involved with The Tax Club, email Brendan Pack at No guarantees that anything will be accomplished, but he is in charge of all the salesman and he is your best bet. Make sure you include the names of people you've spoken to. Thanks for listening to my rant.



Hi this is over at the Tax Club calling on behalf of legal zoom. We have an appointment for this time to go over the different tax strategies of the business as well as the business development elections to make sure everything is structured with the company correctly.

Well what i like to do in the beginning of my calls usually is just find out a little bit about your self and how the company is coming along so we can make sure your are heading down the right direction with the business, id guess I would say the structure of this business is definitely the most imperative part, we basically work with legal zoom acting as a business development center to making sure the proper elections within the entity have been set up before getting any further with the income generating activities with the business. You know for example is this your
First entity,
Are there any business partners you are working with?
Husband or wife,
Are you a W2 employee, projected goals over the next fiscal year?
Filing jointly or single return?


If they are set up as an LLC: Well I mean I see here you are currently and LLC correct? Great, well is their any specific reason why we went with that entity, like a recommendation from a friend CPA or just some research on your own. Well I am glad we have taking the first step towards receiving this legitimacy from the IRS as well as elimination the commingling of business and personal founds and protecting are assets, but I want to make sure you have the company being taxed correctly. How have you elected to have the LLC taxed? Well there are multiple ways and LLC can be taxed either as an 1120s, 1065, 1120, or by default you will be taxed as a sol proprietor. We want to make sure you have the best election made for the income that you are going to be generating. Now business owners all the time set up their entities and strategically don't make any adjustments to them, so in the long run all they have is a piece of paper that says that they are incorporated, what we do with legal zoom is try and make sure that the business owners that have recently gotten incorporated actually have this business benefiting their situation. This should be the times in your guy's life that you are getting the biggest tax return or possible lowering your taxes for no other reason that you have set this thing up.

If they have earned income: (retail store, 1099 independent contractor, real estate agent, anything where they provide a service and get compensated for it.)Well considering you have earned income we want to make sure you have this thing benefiting your situation. Right now with earned income in the United States business owners are liable to pay 15.3 percent in self employment tax. 12% from social security and the other coming from Medicare. Now what we have been able to see the large majority of our business owners do is make some elections that could give them the potential to possible lower and minimize that number. Now when you are a W-2 employer your employer used to pay the other half of your social security but the beautiful part for working for you self is you now get to pay the entire thing up to about $97,500. You can tell from the sarcastic tone in my voice this isn't a good thing, but by making all the proper elections to be taxed as an 1120 s and taking out all the proper salaries, distributions and dividends we have been able to see a lot of our business owners significantly lower that number.

If they are doing real estate:( like holding rentals in a LLC, buying and selling): Well considering you are getting into real estate I def understand why you went with the LLC. It is a great entity, being that it is very easy to manage, it being a flow through entity; everything you gain or lose will eventually flow through and end up on your 1040. So what we want to make sure the structure is set up correctly so when moving forward you can actually benefit from setting this thing up, the last thing you want to do is just flow over a really high positive number to your 1040 because then all your going to be doing is raising your taxable income that you are showing to the IRS. So what the business owners try to do is try to have all the proper elections made within the company so at the end of the year you are actually saving money through these strategies.

If they are getting involved in just rentals: now considering you are getting involved in rentals the last thing we recommend are business owners to do is keep their real-estate in their personal name so I am def glad to see we have the LLC set up. Now have you deeded the title of the property over into the LLC's name? Well immediately that might want to be something you look into, again we have to look into our current situation and make sure that this LLC is working for you not against you, now depending on the mortgage company they probably wont let you transfer the mortgage into the LLC, just because it takes the liabilities of business owners having to pay their mortgage away, but again that all depends. So that is why we work with you guys in the beginning to make sure that all these aspects of the business are looked into before you start focusing on the income generating activities. It just takes more money, time and energy to date back file amended returns, installment agreements, and things like that, so we just try and make sure that we are structuring the business correctly right from the beginning so when moving forward we have one goal and one goal only and that is just to keep the equity of the business growing.

If they are getting involved in stock investing: now I see you are getting involved in stock investing which is great, there is definitely a lot of potential in the market, have you started paper trading yet? Great well how are you doing? Good because that is going to be very similar to the real thing, but what happens is a lot of people don't realize now we have to deal with the issues of capital gains tax and protecting our portfolio. Now what tends to happen with the stock investing program is it makes you get active in the market, by following the different charts and getting in and out of the market you will be making more trades throughout the year. Now before you get involved and start trading with real money we want to make sure the structure of the business is set up first before you start getting involved in those income generating activities. What a lot of traders do before they get involved in the market is set up what's called a multiple entities structure and the reason why they do this is for two reasons tax benefits and asset protection. The last thing we ever want is your portfolio to be liable god forbid some one side swipes you or regardless of what happens. So what we see a lot of our business owners do here is set up and LLC, then what they do is set up a brokerage account and actually put it within the LLC so the LLC is making the investments for them, now after that what happens is they set up a C corp. which governs over the LLC and acts as like a management entity for the investments and then gives you the ability to qualify for some of those fringe benefits of a C corp. like full medical, dental, and things like that. Now what this does is make sure that the assets within the entities are protected and moving forward we have set it up correctly for some of the tax benefits. Now right now in your personal name you max out at only writing off only $3,000 in capital gains, because you are filing them on your schedule D. Now when you become active in this thin you get the ability to qualify for what's called market to market accounting this I a method of accounting that was brought about in 1997 what it has done has made filing simpler but more importantly given business owners the ability to eliminate that $3,000 cap that exists, instead of filing your gains and loses on a schedule D you will no be filing them on a 4797 that is the sales of business property. But again this is why we have this appointment to make sure that the structure of this business is set up in the beginning because a lot of these elections need to be set up in the beginning so by the end of the year we can take them on our returns.

After you have done the beginning consultation and are about to go over deductions:

Now right now you are running the business from the home office? Great well we have seen a lot of our business owners here be able to qualify for several things just like that weather it being bills like utilities all the way to equipment a lot of business owners are able to write a percentage of these things off. Now I know a lot of business owners understand that once they have the business set up they open the door to hundreds of different tax deductions like vehicle expenses, meals and entertainment, ECT. But I don't want to sit here and waist your time on some of these small things, what we try and get you guys to focus on are some of the bigger things like tax strategies and planning. A tax strategy is something that we have to set up in the beginning so by the end up the year we can even take these on our tax return. A lot of business owners in the beginning think that they can keep their same routine of going to the account once at the end of the year and receiving all of these wonderful benefits. For example medical insurance, retirement founds these things need to be set up in the beginning so you can receive these benefits. Now I don't bring up retirement because I am afraid you can't save money it's just a great tax deductible business expense. I mean if we can put some of these dollars aware pretax and let them compound in some type of mutual fund whatever its just makes more sense to worry about these things at a later date when you are in a lower bracket. It's the time value of money, your money is worth much more to us today then it is 5 years from now, so what we continue to do with our business owners is keep these dollars in the company building the equity throughout the beginning years. Which are definitely the most crucial to any start up company?


I. -Introduction

Hello, is ________ there? I'm giving you a call from the The Tax Club on behalf of (Lead Source or Lead Type). How are you today? I am a Small Business Advisor and I've been assigned to ensure were helping you get started with your new endeavor. I'm in the
_________ department. We specialize in this area and work exclusively with clients just like you and have helped nearly 100,000 small business owners towards their business goals and tax preparation needs.

To start, I would just like to take a few minutes and get a feel for where your business is today and a little bit about your situation to see how I can help you out moving forward.

II. -Blast

Are you currently a W2 Employee, Business Owners, 1099 Independent Contractor, etc.?
Is this your first business you're getting involved in?
Do you have a business partner? Or anyone else who you are working with on this, husband, wife?
What are your goals with your new investments / business?
Where do you feel you need to most help in this process?
How much money do you expect and want to make?
What have you budgeted to invest in your business?

I'm definitely glad to see you have taken the time to map out some things initially.

III. -Consultation

Now the first thing we need to make sure is you are able to focus the vast majority of your time and energies on the income-generating activities of your life, because we understand you are not a legal or tax expertand nor would you want to be; but in the end we want to turn you into a little bit of a generalist regarding all the different functions of your business.

One thing we need to ask ourselves isHow are we going to achieve our goals? First we must play devils advocate.

How is the IRS viewing me?
How are my state, local, and federal laws viewing my business and my investments?
Am I being identified with legitimacy by the IRS?
What will provide me with the best protection for myself and my family? For example.

We need to make sure that you have the proper corporate structure/election filing for you and your business in place.

3 Reasons to Set Up a Corporate Structure (if needed)

1) Asset Protection
2.) Liability Protection.
3) Legitimize the Business

1) Asset Protection

There are over 100 million lawsuits pending currently in the United States. Lawsuits, debts, bankruptcies are more prevalent today then ever. Do you own a home? Well, getting involved with any type of business __________, especially, it is imperative this day in age that you always separate all of your personal assets from your business.

What assets do you own currently?
Do you have any investment properties?
Checking / Savings accounts?

It sounds like you definitely have some assets that need to be protected. Properly structured your assets and investments could mean the difference between long term investment success, or complete failure.

2.) Liability Protection. A Corp of LLC provides full liability protection to its officers and directors (called "Managers") and its shareholders (called "Members"). As either a Manager or a Member, you are liable only for the money you have invested into the LLC and cannot be found personally liable for any debts incurred by the LLC.

Example: Consider the risks associated with owning real estate, especially rental properties:

Tenant injuries.
Trespassers injured while on vacant land.
Unauthorized dumping or storing of hazardous waste.

All of these could pose a serious risk to your financial well-being if you held the property in your name directly, even with insurance. Owning property in your own name means that in the event you are sued and found guilty, anything your insurance policy does not cover will come out of your own pocket. Putting an LLC entity between you and this personal liability means that your personal assets will stay protected.

3) Legitimize the Business

Once your incorporate yourself or structure your corporate entity, (S-Corp, C-Corp, LLC) your chances of being audited are greatly reduced. You looked at with legitimacy by the IRS. You have reduced your chances drastically of an audit and are now perceived as a legitimate business owner. The legitimacy alone can potentially save you thousands of dollars as well as many man hours and labor not having to deal with an audit on your business.

The corporate entity structure changes how the IRS views and opens you up to hundreds of deductions you may qualify for. Not everyone qualifies for every deduction. But many of our clients qualify for deductions such as home office, medical expenses, vehicle, meals & entertainment, and even start up costs. A lot of this depends on taxable income, type of business your in, how you're structured: C corp. S Corp, LLC, etc. This bottom line is this is how many millionaires pay very little in taxes- they have a corporate structure or multi entity structure they utilize for proactive tax planning and tax savings. Many of our clients have reduced their taxes very significantly by thousands of dollars by writing off many items on a day to day basis.

One thing that will ring true to you over and over again as I discuss our process is that we do everything for you. What I mean is that you don't want to focus on taxes or setting up entities for example, you want to focus on your goals and making your new business a huge success. Have you ever heard the phrase Jack of all trades, master of none? This phrase is a business killer. With an approximate 80% failure rate for new businesses, we believe we have found the reason, spreading your self too thin. New business owners try to do the job of 10 when they are only one. Why be a bookkeeper, accountant, tax preparer, business consultant, and lawyer, when your real focus should be one thing and one thing only, MAKING MONEY. You are now a business owner, focus just on that and you have the potential for huge success.

So what happens is on behalf of (lead source), you have been appointed a whole team of professional to assist you with your development. With your team consisting of
1) Cpa's
2) Corporate specialists
3) Enrolled agents
4) Professional bookkeepers
5) Business consultants specializing in your specific area

So one of the biggest issues we're working against right now is time. To set up an entity/ usually consists of a 3-6 week lead time. (election filing 75 day deadline) As me and you both know, we are not dealing with a private entity, we are dealing with the government so it does take some significant time. If we do not get this ball moving as quickly as possible, soon our hands will soon be tied. Say come later on, there won't be much ill be able to help you out with. But if we are working to advance together, we can constructively work to accomplish a strategy. Now one of the first things that we need to make sure is in place is a comprehensive business plan charting your course for success.

IV. -Pitch
Now let me tell you how I'm going to be able to help you out.

I'm giving you a call from the business development department at The Tax Club. We are one of the largest small business advisors in the country with clients in all 50 states. We have 6 offices in North America: New York, NY; Mesquite, Nevada; Toronto, Canada; Fort Worth, Texas; St. George, Utah; as well as Tempe, Arizona. And you are speaking to me in our midtown Manhattan office. We're located on the 60th floor of The Empire State Building and this is the center of our tax operations. This is where we house all of our bookkeepers, accountants, CPAs, and EA's.

We have a little different approach to business and taxes, though, than most people are familiar with. Most people approach for example taxes as once a year activity. That is not how corporate taxes should be done. You see, in order to pay as little as legally possible, you have to deal with your taxes throughout the year. That is why we take a proactive approach. And that is why; the traditional days of going to your local CPA or traditional accountant at the end of the year, receiving a fee and not knowing where it came from, those days are over. I mean by no means do we expect you to be a tax expert, but we do expect you to be some what of a generalist.

So what we are going to do first is; you will have several set-appointments with us in the first couple months to develop the foundation of your business. This is where we will look at your previous situation, where you are now and more importantly where you are going moving forward. By taking a proactive approach, with a little bit of planning, you will GREATLY reduce your tax liability. And I know it is not incredibly exciting at times, but yet it is incredibly important to have a successful business.

Now, your first appointment that we are going to schedule is your client orientation. This is where we basically set some future appointments and begin our data collection process. From there we will set up your corporation for you at no charge.

Now the second appt. that we will schedule is your corporate appt. with your corporate specialist. And this is where; we are going to advise or set-up your corporate structure for you. You simply pick out the name; we will take care of the rest. So now you have maximized your asset protection, separating all of your personal assets from your business assets; you have decreased your SE tax rate as much as legally possible; as well as changed how the IRS views you.

The 3rd appt. that we will schedule is your Documentation Analysis. This is with your professional bookkeeper. This is where we will begin to teach you the different business deductions I mentioned to you earlier. We'll also teach you what is expected of you from the IRS in regards to proper documentation. People get audited not because there maximizing deductions but people get audited because of improper documentation.

So basically, I think it goes with out saying, but we will be preparing and filing your personal and corporate taxes, each and every year. In our tax preparation process we have two main goals; 1 is to comply with the laws and 2, to minimize the tax our clients have to pay. Here our tax prep. teams will work hand and hand with you on ways to potentially save you thousands of dollars annually. You will never again have to worry about the dread of tax season,' we will be preparing and filing everything for you.

What myself and your team of specialist are going to do next is implement a comprehensive business and tax plan, assisting you with hitting these potential goals and objectives for your business, working with you hand in hand, step by step, appt. by appt. making sure that your business is taking all the appropriate steps to success.

Also, at the end of the year we'll also do what's called The Annual Financial Fitness Review This is where we basically make sure we did our job right. It's a checks and balance system that we've emplaced over the years to make sure you paid as little as legally possible.

So by far, the cornerstone of the company, (why we have a 97% client retention rate) is the unlimited-year-round tax consulting and advisory with your whole team of financial specialists. You have to take a year-round approach to taxes in order to pay as little as legally possible. You can either contact us either toll free, email or fax us, in person or via-email. Typically business owners are very busy just like your self so of course everything with successful businesses is dealt over the phone or electronically.

But as I said, we do take a much different approach. So let me tell you how we bill our clients. First of all, we don't bill you by the hour or at the end of the year with some fee where you don't know how we came up with it. We have what's called memberships for our clients. Our memberships consist of an initial investment and then a small corresponding monthly fee. Our memberships are lifetime memberships and are a single investment of just $_______. That's one time. Moving forward you would now have us on a retainer where you pay us only $_________ per month. You're locked in at the 2007 rate so that means you would pay $________ a month for as long as you wanted to work with us. So, in 2007, 2008 you still only pay $_______ a month. That's only $_______ a year

Included in the membership:

One Corporate Entity setup (Or not w. Legal Zoom, Inc File, WIA)
Your corporation tax return (one federal & one state return each year you are a member)
Your personal tax return (one federal & one state return each year you are a member)
Unlimited year-round tax consulting and advisory with our accountants- Assistance in Audit
Develop and implement a comprehensive tax plan for your business, encompassing your current financial situation as well as your goals in the years ahead.
Access to The Tax Club's e-tax hotline 24 hours a day
Access to the member's only section of
Annual Financial Fitness Review

As well as everything else.

But of course, how you need to look at the membership is as an investment. Because even the membership itself, it is 100% tax deductible as well.

If you are concerned about a couple hundred dollars each and every year in annual advisory fees, without a doubt you are focusing on the wrong thing, what we really want you to focus on, are the potentially thousands of dollars in additional income you can be generating with your business, now that you are spending all your time on the income generating activities of your life, because those are really the areas where you can add the most value. We feel your odds for success dramatically increase when you bring on a team of experts whose only goal is to help you work smarter, not harder.


Ok, so what I'm going to do now is, I'm going to just verify all of your information that we have here on file on behalf of ________. Now I have your first and last name as________, and your address as. Oh I'm sorry, what is your physical address? Ok terrific; now I currently have one phone number here on file for your business. The phone number that I currently have on file is _______. Is there possibly an additional phone number that you can put on file for your business, possibly maybe an additional cell phone or LAN line? Ok fantastic.

Now what I am going to do now; I'm going to be sending out a welcome package. That welcome package will be sent out via email. Now in that email will once again restate all of our different services that we will be providing you as well as it will also contain our guarantee. In our guarantee, it states; That we guarantee that we will provide you with $1000 dollars worth of tax services as well as we will also beat your last years taxes by $1000 dollars or you will receive you full refund. Now the email address that I have here on file to send that welcome package to is _________, that's the correct email address that you would like that sent to right?

Ok terrific, so I have all of your correct information here on file, in just a second what we are going to do is put a credit card on file that is the credit card that we will put on file for the initial setup fee, as well as maintain on file for the corresponding monthly fee.

Then in just one second, I'm just going to transfer you over to my secretary. She is just going to verify your information quickly, and then pick out a good time with her that you will have about 20-25min. available for your first appt. which is your client orientation. Do you have just one second to speak with my secretary??

Ok, so I'm going to get you all squared away, and what type of credit card would you like to put on file for your business?


.. I know you are going through a transition, just keep in mind, we will be holding your hand through this process. I'm going to have my secretary confirm your information and set up your NCO. I look forward to working with you. Please hold on for me just one minute.
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