Wednesday, September 30, 2009


* Some good news! Mary O’Keefe quotes Harry Buckley, CEO of Jackson-Hewitt, speaking to investors and prospective investors in his firm in a call earlier this month in her post “Jackson Hewitt CEO Talks About the Tax Prep Market” at BED BUFFALOES IN YOUR TAX CODE.

Here is what Buckley had to say (I have highlighted the good news) -

In looking at the entire industry, if we look at the number of returns that were filed last year, and certainly we were down over 500,000 and Block was down over 600,000, and yet the total returns filed electronically were only down 27,000. I think it's indicative from that that there is a growing market out there for independents.”

So between them Block and Hewitt screwed over 1 Million less taxpayers than they did the year before! Let’s hope the number of filers who use these two firms, and let’s not forget Liberty as well, continues to drop.

And, on yeah, when reading Mary’s post be sure to notice Buckley’s comment about “when we have control of the client in our office”.

* Stacie Clifford Kitts continues to bring us news “From The Stupid Preparer Files” at STACIE’S MORE TAX TIPS. This time she tells us of “A Man Pretending To Be a Former IRS Employee Claims To Have A Special Relationship With The IRS”.

This guy really had balls. Stacie points out that after completing a fraudulent return for a client he told the client “he [Mr. Mirabella] had worked extra hard on the client's return and that in addition to his normal $3,000 fee, he would like to receive a "tip" for his services”!

Gee, if I could get $3,000 per 1040 I could really cut down my workload!

* Whatever you, or I, may think about the competence of the IRS in dealing with taxpayers, one must admit that the IRS website – – provides excellent information on tax topics.

The Service recently finished an excellent series of “2009 Summertime Tax Tips” on various tax deductions and issues. Click here to check out the series.

* I have said it many times here at TWTP, and other bloggers have said the same thing in their venues. But it is something that needs to be said over and over. IRS HITMAN Richard Close says it again in his post “Avoid IRS Debt: Freelance Workers, Hire Professional for your Taxes”.

Any company that says they can settle your debt for ‘Pennies on the Dollar’ is only interested in your money. They'll tell that you qualify for an Offer in Compromise, even if you can't. Remember, only 2% of the people who apply for an Offer in Compromise actually get approved. And even fewer people literally settle their debt for Pennies on the Dollar.”

* Just more documentation on how New Jersey’s politicians have totally FU-ed the state with their addiction to pork – the Tax Foundation has issued a “Fiscal Fact” with more data from “New Census Data on Property Taxes on Homeowners”.

The FF shows the Top 20 counties, with population of 20,000 or more, in median real estate taxes paid from 2005-2007. New Jersey has 13 counties on the list, including Hudson County (where I live) at #14. New York State, whose Westchester County tops the list, has 5 and Connecticut and Illinois have 1 each.

* Speaking of the Tax Foundation and New Jersey, check out the post "Fighting New Jersey's Tax Crush".

* Joe Kristan tells us that the “Google Defense” is just as effective as the “Turbo Tax Defense” when it comes to tax return FUs.

Joe’s post “'Google' Is Not the Tax Law” at the ROTH AND COMPANY TAX UPDATE BLOG tells of a Tax Court case in which the taxpayer claimed he failed to include in taxable income a $150,000 IRA distribution, for which he received a Form 1099-R, based on advice he found on the internet using Google.

The bottom line, as Joe puts it – “Google is wonderful, but it's no tax pro”.

FYI, you will find a detailed review of the case here at THE TAX LAW REPORT blog.

* Happy Birthday to TAX GIRL Kelly Phillips Erb!

If you want to read ten things that you may not know about Kelly check out her post “They Say It’s Your Birthday…".

This sounds like a good idea for a birthday post. I have a month and a half or so to come up with ten things you may not know about me.


No comments: