Michelle L. says:
I usually ask my accountant to prepare my annual income taxes, but because she was busy doing my business taxes and to save time waiting for her, I decided to go to H&R Block. I also had several deductions and wanted to make sure a professional handled everything. When I made my appointment, I asked the receptionist what the approximate cost was for a single filing (usually a 1040); she quoted me around $50. That seemed reasonable to me, and even though I had deductions, I knew there may be an additional fee but nothing close to what they ended up charging me. After I met with the tax preparer (which I question has any expertise since she kept leaving to ask a senior preparer questions on the deductions form), the final bill was almost $400! And because I didn't want to pay for their fees up front, they charged me an additional $35. I was shocked, and frankly felt tricked into them doing the work upfront, and then telling me the price for their services afterwards. The total ended up being approximately 20% of my tax return!
After leaving, still dumfounded by the high fees, I decided to return and confront the manager and request an itemization of all the charges. Well, the manager was too busy (which I understand; it is tax season), so an associate preparer ( I think) shows up and tells me that they don't provide itemizations of charges; all charges are determined by corporate. Really? You have no idea what you are charging people for your services?? I asked about the $50 I was quoted, and then told by her that the price is for 1040EZ forms, not the 1040 form that my preparer used; and the price jumps up to $150! I feel conned and taken advantage of. I told my preparer, Stephanie, the receptionist and the second preparer that they charge more than my accountant!
People, please, please, please do not give your money to these people. They are thieves, and will take advantage of you. Educate yourselves, and please take the time to find an accountant outside of franchised businesses like H&R Block. I requested that the owner of this location (who lives in Oak Harbor - at least that is what I was told) contact me, but that person never did. So much for customer service. I also asked the preparer I talked to after I returned if I had an option NOT to pay the high fee when Stephanie was done; she told me 'yes'. REMEMBER THIS: WHEN YOUR TAXES ARE DONE, AND YOU DON'T LIKE THE FEE THEY CHARGE, SIMPLY GET UP AND WALK OUT. I will never go back to any H&R Block. They are predators and will take advantage of you.