Thousands of Arizonans will get settlement checks after investigation into TurboTax

Intuit tricked consumers into paying to file their federal tax returns and will be sending out checks as part of a $141 million nationwide settlement.

Thousands of Arizonans will get settlement checks after investigation into TurboTax

Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes has announced that tens of thousands Arizonans are soon to receive $3.3 million as settlement money after they paid for tax services which should have been provided free of charge.

This money is part a $141million nationwide settlement announced last year over allegations that TurboTax's owner Intuit had tricked customers into paying for the filing of their federal tax returns. About 4.4 million people will be reimbursed across the nation, including 108,000 in Arizona.

Mayes stated in a press release that 'every year, millions go online to do what they're supposed to: file their tax returns.' The deceptive practices used by TurboTax manipulated taxpayers into parting with their hard-earned money. This settlement righted a wrong, and returns that money to taxpayers who should never have paid for them to file their taxes.

The agreement was signed by all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia, and announced by Letitia James, New York Attorney general, along with the attorneys general of Tennessee, Florida Illinois, New Jersey North Carolina Pennsylvania Texas and Washington.

The IRS Free File Program is open to consumers who paid TurboTax to file their federal income tax returns for the tax years 2016 to 2018 and were otherwise eligible to file free.

The eligible recipients will receive an email notification and a check by mail. Mailings will begin the week after next.

The AG's Office said that most consumers will receive between $29 to $30. However, the amount received depends on the number of tax years they have filed.

ProPublica, a non-profit investigative organization, found that the company had used deceptive tactics in order to divert low-income customers away from free federal tax services and towards its commercial products.

Intuit was found guilty of deceptive and unfair business practices by a multi-state investigation. This limited the participation of consumers in the IRS Free File Program. The investigation also revealed that Intuit used confusingly similar terms for its IRS Free File and commercial 'freemium" products. According to a recent announcement from the Arizona AG, the TurboTax Freemium product was only available for a third of U.S. tax payers. The IRS Free File product was free for as many as 70% of U.S. tax payers.