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Not ‘free, free, free’: Thousands of Idahoans to get checks, refunds after ‘deceptive’ ads for TurboTax

Intuit, the maker of tax software TurboTax, used to run ads touting “TurboTax Free is free. Free free free free.”

But, it wasn’t free for many taxpayers. All 50 states and the District of Columbia sued Intuit – saying the company used “deceptive digital tactics” to steer taxpayers into a paid product instead of the free version.

Now, more than 27,000 Idahoans will get a check for about $30 as part of a settlement between Intuit and the state attorneys general.

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An investigation found Intuit limited participation in the Internal Revenue Service’s Free File program, with “confusingly similar” names. Intuit bought search engine ads looking to funnel taxpayers looking for the IRS Free File program to its service instead, where they were directed to a paid product and not recommended for the IRS free program, even though they were eligible.

In addition to the roughly $30 check, millions of taxpayers will get a refund from Intuit for the 2016-2018 tax years. Intuit also agreed to several other stipulations as part of the settlement, according to the Idaho AG’s office.

Details on how consumers can see if they are impacted have not yet been released.

Intuit is based in Mountain View, California. The company has significant operations in Eagle as part of its acquisition of TSheets in 2018.

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Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don is the founder and publisher of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow. Contact him at [email protected].

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