If you’ve used TurboTax to file your tax returns in the past, you may be eligible to get a portion of a $141 million settlement.
About 4.4 million people used the tax preparation software but paid Intuit to file despite being eligible for the Internal Revenue Service’s Free File program, NBC News reported.
The settlement was announced last year after a report by ProPublica found that TurboTax’s parent company, Intuit, persuaded low-income taxpayers to use its fee-based filing, even after promoting access to no-cost options through its “free, free, free” advertisements.
“Frequently ‘free’ didn’t mean free at all,” ProPublica reported. “Many who started in TurboTax Free Edition found that if their return required certain commonplace tax forms, they would have to upgrade to a paid edition in order to file.”
Attorneys general from Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, North Carolina, New York, Texas and Washington were part of the initial multistate agreement in 2022, with all 50 states and the District of Columbia signing onto the decree, the news release said.
“Today, every state in the nation is holding Intuit accountable for scamming millions of taxpayers, and we’re putting millions of dollars back into the pockets of impacted Americans,” New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a separate statement.
In a statement to CBS News, Inuit said, “Intuit is pleased to have reached a resolution with the state attorneys general that will ensure the company can return our focus to providing vital services to American taxpayers today and in the future.”
To qualify, taxpayers must have started their return using TurboTax Free Edition Product but have been told that they were ineligible to use it and had to pay for another version of the program while filing their 2016, 2017 or 2018 taxes. They could not have used the IRS’ Free File program in the previous tax year, CBS News reported.
The maximum income to use the IRS Free File system was $64,000 in 2016.
While the settlement was for $141 million, don’t expect to see thousands of dollars or even $100 if you qualify for the refund.
Most people will get either $29 or $30 and the checks will be sent automatically without having to file a claim, according to a news release from the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office.
A person who used the system for all three years could get about $85, CBS News reported.
The checks are expected to be sent this month.
For more information visit the settlement website.