The Ultimate Price War - Free Tax Return Preparation

The audit department has been dealing with it for years: deep discounts in the price of an audit in exchange for higher fees on the consulting side.

Now the commoditization of tax return preparation -- already hammered by do-it-yourself software -- has reached the ultimate in price wars. Financial management company H D Vest announced that it will provide it's customers with free tax return preparation beginning this next season. The hook? More clients, more assets under management, more profits for HD Vest.

Through the H.D. Vest Financial Services web site more than one million consumers will be able to complete their 1999 tax return forms - from the 1040 EZ to the more complex forms - online and e-file them for free.

As the return is being prepared, the system will prompt the user to alert him or her to year end tax planning opportunities. At the click of a button, the customer will be connected to a local HD Vest consultant who can talk through the financial or tax issues.

Unlike other services, there will be no income minimum or maximum.

Web-based online tax return preparation will be a big push this year, as other tax preparation giants H&R Block and Intuit are looking to launch significantly-reduced fee based services starting in January.

How will this affect your practice? IT JUST MAKES CLIENT SERVICE THAT MUCH MORE ESSENTIAL!

You may like these other stories...

While reputational risk is the No. 1 nonfinancial concern among corporate directors, cybersecurity/IT risk is gaining steam. In fact, both private companies and organizations with more than $1 billion in revenue felt they...
Many senior US tax professionals believe that a streamlined audit process will be the top benefit resulting from the IRS Transfer Pricing Audit Roadmap, a new toolkit organized around a notional 24-month audit timeline,...
Tax accounting to be simplified for money-market fundsThe US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) voted 3-2 on Wednesday for sweeping changes to institutional money-market funds, Emily Chasan, senior editor of...

Upcoming CPE Webinars

Jul 31
In this session Excel expert David Ringstrom helps beginners get up to speed in Microsoft Excel. However, even experienced Excel users will learn some new tricks, particularly when David discusses under-utilized aspects of Excel.
Aug 5
This webcast will focus on accounting and disclosure policies for various types of consolidations and business combinations.
Aug 20
In this session we'll review best practices for how to generate interest in your firm’s services.