If you used TurboTax in 2016, 2017, or 2018, Intuit might owe you money

In May of 2022, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced a $141 million settlement with Intuit Inc., owner of TurboTax, to compensate all the customers who paid for tax preparation services that should have been free. This week, James announced that the first checks resulting from the settlement have started being mailed out to impacted customers.

“TurboTax’s predatory and deceptive marketing cheated millions of low-income Americans who were trying to fulfill their legal duties to file their taxes,” Attorney General James announced in a statement on Thursday, May 4th. “Today we are righting that wrong and putting money back into the pockets of hardworking taxpayers who should have never paid to file their taxes. I thank my fellow attorneys general for their partnership in this effort to stand up for ordinary Americans and hold companies who cheat consumers accountable.”

If you paid to file your federal tax returns through TurboTax for tax years 2016, 2017, and 2018, but you were eligible to file for free through the IRS Free File Program, you might be entitled to a payment from Intuit. If you are indeed eligible, you will be notified by email by the settlement fund administrator, Rust Consulting. If you receive an email about your eligibility, you won’t have to file a claim. You’ll receive a check in the mail automatically.

According to the Intuit multi-state settlement website, the checks will start going out the week of May 7th, and checks will continue to be mailed throughout May.

The amount of money eligible consumers will receive depends on the number of tax years for which they qualify. The AG’s office says most consumers should expect to receive between $29 and $30, but if you filed with TurboTax for all three years, you could get up to $85. Approximately 4.4 million consumers nationwide will receive checks this month.

Having used TurboTax to file my own taxes nearly every year since I graduated college and started working full-time, I was frustrated to discover just how much money I could have saved if I had known about free tax services when this news came to light. Now we just need the government to simplify the federal tax code so that we won’t have to spend so much time stressing over our taxes every year, but I won’t be holding my breath.

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