Intuit, makers of TurboTax, increased the price and limited the options in this year’s release of their main tax preparation software for this tax season. TurboTax 2008 is now $59.95, up from $44.95 last year. They have also limited the number of free filings including in the package from 5 to 1. Needless to say TurboTax users are not happy, and CNET and The Consumerist report that consumers are protesting the move by giving the product low ratings on its Amazon page. At the time of this posting, 144 out of 159 reviewers have given it a one-star rating. All the comments also express anger at the tax company’s change to make TurboTax more expensive.
CNET also reports that Intuit has some experience with frustrated customers:
But Intuit is no stranger to customer frustration. Many last-minute filers were outraged in 2007, when their attempts to electronically file returns were rejected by overloaded servers. Also affected were TurboTax users’ attempts to verify whether a previously filed return had been accepted by the IRS and state tax collectors.
In 2003, Intuit embedded flawed antipiracy technology in TurboTax, and was forced to abandon the idea and apologize to customers.
Two years later, the version of TurboTax designed to handle the 2004 tax year was plagued by glitches and installation problems. It also accidentally directed customers to a phone number used by a sex chat operation called Intimate Encounters.
If any TurboTax users are wondering where to turn now that Intuit has changed its rules, we recommend TaxACT, an official Shoeboxed partner. They have free e-filing and their plans range from free to $16.95. Check them out!