H&R Block Caught Doing What?

WhisperToMe, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

(FixThisNation.com) – The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed a complaint for deceptive marketing of products against H&R Block, a taxation firm, for having allegedly claimed that certain products were available for “free” even though they were not. The complaint also notes that the company had deleted customers’ tax data while they were attempting to downgrade their level of service.  

FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection director Samuel Levine stated that H&R had designed its online products in a way that was putting pressure on consumers to pressure them into overpaying for products that the company offered. He added that the actions taken today have shown that companies using coercive techniques to harm consumers should expect to receive notice from the FTC. 

The FTC has filed an administrative complaint in which it is alleged that H&R Block’s online tax filing products have gotten consumers to purchase higher-priced items to just do more complex tax filing than what is needed for them. 

The company has not clearly explained which products have covered tax situations, schedules, and forms which has only resulted in consumers getting more unnecessary and expensive products. However, after the consumers realize that they have been paying for unnecessary products the company forces them to go through a number of time-consuming hurdles in order to be able to downgrade to a less expensive option according to the complaint. Consumers would also be required to contact the company through phone or online chat in order to be allowed to downgrade, which many consumers have found to be time-consuming and frustrating. 

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