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Customer Review

93 of 97 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars "Worry-free Audit Support" Is, frankly, a lie, February 23, 2011
This review is from: H&R Block At Home 2010 Deluxe Federal + State + eFile [Download] [OLD VERSION] (Software Download)
I don't write much in the way of reviews, but this one is long overdue. I've used the yearly iterations of this software since 2002. The software itself has always been fine, and has helped me do my taxes effectively during that period. However, a major reason for buying it all along has been the selling point of "Worry-free Audit Support", and the company failed me spectacularly during 2010.

I received a letter from the IRS in the spring of 2010 saying that I had miscalculated income in 2007 filings related to an adoption. Now, I'm not an aggressive tax person by any means - I don't take any exotic deductions, exemptions or credits, and try to make it so every year I might owe a couple hundred dollars, or get a small refund. I pay my taxes, and that's fine. Suddenly this letter from the IRS says I owe over $2500, and can I pay it now please, thank you very much? Well, it was inaccurate on the part of the IRS - I had the papers, the program, the file, all of it... and after hyperventilating a bit, I called the IRS. Essentially, I was told that I couldn't take the deduction, and I kept having this circular argument with the woman, where she simply couldn't understand why I thought I could have this deduction. Here's where the H&R Block "Worry-free Audit Support" people come in.

I spent 2 hours on the phone with this support guy, asking for some help in dealing with the matter. He was polite; He was intelligent; and he deliberately and specifically refused to provide any support at all, because it was an assessment, not an audit. What??? What does that even mean??? For the next 2 hours, I read the fine print on their guarantee with him, and listened to him read scripted refusals about not providing a tax person to assist, a manager to speak with, a means of redress; I was told I was on my own.

So, ok, I'm on my own. Next day, I try the IRS folks again. Thank GOD you don't ever get the same person twice. In 10 minutes, I had the problem fixed. I pointed out the issue, asked if I could walk through the pertinent part of the file line by line; I got to the 3rd line and the new IRS lady says "Oh, I see, it's that same computer problem again. This has been happening a lot lately. You're ok, I'm fixing it now." "Wow... Ok, Thank you very much, you'll send a letter? Thank you, thank you thank you! Goodbye!" No actual problem, I was right, IRS was wrong. 10 minutes on the phone. But H&R Block's "Worry-free Audit Support"? NOT THERE FOR YOU.

So, again, the software in general has been fine, and if you buy it expecting to defend yourself to the IRS WITHOUT any help from the fine people at H&R Block, you'll be happy enough. But if you need help related to ANYTHING to do with audits, assessments, or whatever, they will fail you. My problem was thinking "Worry-free Audit Support" meant if the IRS says you filed your taxes incorrectly, you'll have some help. To H&R Block, "Worry-free Audit Support" means "You'd better worry".
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 27, 2011 12:20:35 PM PST
Doug says:
wow! I'll think twice about buying this software again.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 28, 2011 7:52:26 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 28, 2011 7:53:58 PM PST
Ditto!

Thanks for sharing this experience. Don't think I'll buy this year (I've been buying this product since 1997)... maybe I'll give turbo-tax a try this time.

Funny thing is: I don't care that much about "worry free audit support". I do care about product support, though. I also care about keeping promises.

If a company doesn't have that, what else really matters?

Posted on Mar 1, 2011 7:33:26 AM PST
Alan says:
I think you could have walked into a Block office with your printed return for help but I am sure it was frustrating.

Posted on Mar 2, 2011 7:18:10 AM PST
I also will get missed signals when talking to some support people. Not only from the IRS, Amazon.com, H & R Block, Health Savings Account Bank of America etc. It seems that a lot of companies have new hires that are in customer support jobs. I think they are being trained when doing the actual job (giving inaccurate advice and conclusions during the break in training period). I have been an auditor for quality and had to have a college degree plus 40 hours of additional training and take a two hour written exam in order to qualify for performing a quality audit. Customer support activities which require skills depend on the expertise of the trained individuals. Companies will either hire these skills in or or train the newly hired employees to develop these skills. These required skills need to be determined in advance of hiring. The required skills will in turn set the standards that in turn will require the type of education, additional training or experience that is needed. These required skills also become the specifications for the candidate. The required skills of the customer service person must match the qualifications of the candidate that are required in that service area, in this example the IRS and H & R Block. You have experienced a nonconformance by both companies who should know better. Your customer review should bring this to there attention and they should correct these nonconformities for continues improvements.

Posted on Mar 8, 2011 2:41:43 PM PST
syburry says:
I had a similar problem that HR Block's calculation was wrong on a state form. Try and get your tax corrected and their guarantee fulfilled. They put you through so many steps to receive even a review of the problem. And that's after they want you to pay the backtax before they will even approve a look at the problem. Try getting that $ back from any tax collector. Once your check clears,no one helps!
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