TheTaxClub - TacClub ripoff and unauthorized charges
The TaxClub is all about incompetence, very reprehensible high pressure sales on the phone, false promises, BS selling points and worse of all ....... sheer fraud.
They virtually have given me NOTHING for Something !
My daughter Danielle and I were about to start our own business on-line last year by a company called StoresOnline in Utah in the USA.
StoresOnline has build a website (www.railwayhobbies.com) for us and gives us the necessary support for which we have paid them a considerable amount of money but which is of course fine to us.
However StoresOnline had given our details (without our knowledge) to another company called The TaxClub in New York.
So very suddenly I was called on my mobilephone in October 2008 by a person called Anthony Cheedy. He was a staff member of the TaxClub in New York.
He told me The TaxClub would do a lot for me and my new business online regarding all tax issues, tax refunds, obtaining necessary business credit et cetera et cetera ........
He told me because of I had that website on-line based in the USA I would have to pay Tax in the USA but could also get heaps of Tax refunds if I would let them take care of that.
I told him that we hadn't made any sales yet out of this website (in fact it was still under construction at StoresOnline at that time).
According to Mr. Cheedy that didn't make any difference to the IRS (The USA Tax office).
I asked him what that membership would cost me :
He said $2.995 (or the amount of AUS $4.713,28 that had later been credited back to my card by ANZ bank here in Australia).
When I made objections against that (for me huge) amount of money even compounded by the very unfavourable exchange rate from US$ to AUS$ he immediately raised his voice and told me I was about to miss an extremely important opportunity !
"You HAVE to be serious about your business" he almost shouted and otherwise you are going to fail without the right team of "Tax" people behind you !!
Besides the TaxClub will take care of a "corporate business line of credit" to which you can transfer your expenses from your present creditcard (ie my ANZ card).
I told him an amount of US$2.995 would max out my creditcard.
"No problem" Anthony said, this is only temporary, so shall I go ahead and give our billing department the "Green" light ??
And don't forget : "You will get almost if not all BACK when we lodge your very first Tax return here in the USA !".
Forgive my gullibility but after that I decided to give in and give that "Green" light and my card number and expirydate (something that I would regret enormously after a few months !).
He also pressured me to purchase a 1 year Tax preparation for an additional US$895 (which was BS because our business hasn't even made any sales till today !). I told him my card would probably decline but Anthony said no, Billing has already tried that and your card still takes that extra $895 !
Can you imagine ???!!!
At that time however I was confused by all the pushing salestalk of this guy Anthony and of course I wanted to give our new business the best possible start-off.
Anyway, after this all they did was emailing a link to me (www.findbizcredit.com) and I was advised to obtain that "corporate USA card" MYSELF !
On the links at findbizcredit they WOULDN'T let me fill in the country hence I only can fill in an address based in the USA.
That DID not work at all.
And if it would have worked NO card issuer would have granted me a creditcard WITHOUT good track records of course but the TaxClub told me they were able to "tackle" these kind of problems.
After the failure with findbizcredit they told me to create a bankaccount in the USA first !
So they emailed me SIX links of USA based banks where I could create a bankaccount (of course I had to do this once again MYSELF !).
Same result as with findbizcredit :
NO Bankaccount in the USA if you are NOT a USA citizen !
The TaxClub finally admitted that a LOT more was required to obtain a Bankaccount and finally a corporate (Business) Creditcard.
In the meantime I had all kind of phonecall appointments scheduled with various "consultants" of the TaxClub.
It looked like they were meant to be "educational" phone calls but in fact they all came down to one thing :
"Trying to sell me more of their (horrendous) expensive services". You can compare it when you get a call from a Telemarketer who tries to sell you something on the phone.
Some of them were outright cheeky :
"Well Jan, how is the balance of your creditcard today ??".
Need I say more ....... ???
On one of those occasions they tried to sell me their so-called "Essential Plan" for US$1.500
When I told them I didn't have that amount on my card they immediately offered me a discount and said : Today as a member of our club you can get it for $872 !!
I said again : "No, you WAIT until I give you my consent to charge my card !".
That was their very last charge of AUS$1.367,47 on March 19th AFTER I had cancelled my membership with them and which is my second dispute that you did receive recently by fax.
Thank God I had my card number changed by ANZ that very same day.
I want to emphasize that this kind of behaviour is FRAUD (nothing more and nothing less) !!!!
Need I say more ....... ???
Also in the meantime I had found out that being an Australian permanent resident I ONLY have to pay Tax to the ATO and NOT to the IRS !!
For that very same reason however there can be NO taxreturns from the IRS either ! Leave alone covering my initial huge expenses with the TaxClub.
Now I cannot believe the TaxClub didn't know these things.
They are either totally incompetent or .......... they most deliberately pushed these issues as major selling points to persuade me to purchase their most expensive membership !!!
I think I know by now which one of those two possibilities can be crossed out .....
Anthony Cheedy also had (most conveniently) "forgotten" to tell me that with the membership came a recurred monthly charge of $50 (Aus$85).
I also had that one disputed and credited back to my card in February.
By January I had realised I had made a huge huge error and requested a Refund of the intial $2.995 and also the additional $895.
I got an email from their Billing Department saying I could get the $895 refunded but not the $2.995 (see appendix print-out emails).
I knew this already earlier from them by telephone and had no other option than filing a dispute with my bank (ANZ Card Solutions).
To my utter relief the whole amount of $2.995 (AUS$4.713,28) was credited back to my card which I saw on my statement by the end of February but I didn't know that this was still NOT the end of the story !
I officially cancelled my membership with the TaxClub and received again an email that I was NOT eligible for a Refund because my membership had exceeded the duration of 30 days.
They "regretted" my cancellation en stated that "no further billing will occur".
What that meant I was to find out 3 weeks later when I was charged out of the blue by them for their "Essential Plan" for an amount of AUS$1.367,47 !!!
Their refusal of a Refund of the amount of $2.995 took place at a time that they were NOT aware of the fact that I had disputed the transaction and that the money was back where it belonged : ON MY CARD !!
However suddenly on March the 25th I received an email with an attachment that they offered me a (partial) Refund of US$1.750,50.
They did not explain at all why they suddenly had changed their mind but I bet my *** on it that it was NOT out of compassion for sure !!
At that time they MUST have been aware of my charge-back so that Refund does NOT make any sense at all (because ANZ had already credited the amount back to my card) !
Hence I decided to IGNORE that Refund form.
Would I have signed that form I also would have signed to AGREE with a charge of US$1.244,45 and THAT was even a more important reason for me to completely ignore that email and that form.
In summary I can say that all this TaxClub has done for me was :
Sending me an envelope of copied brochures to my residential address here in Queensland, Australia.
Registering a business name in the USA (which only took 10 minutes on the phone and could have been done for free on-line).
Emailing me one (BS) link to obtain a business creditcard.
Emailing me 6 (BS) links of USA bases banks to obtain a bankaccount in the USA.
This ............ DOES NOT REFLECT AN AMOUNT OF US$1244.45 (AUS$1958.10)
No, this is not even worth a tiny fraction of this amount.
They don't even hesitate to charge your card behind your back .........
My ANZ bank took good care of my second dispute of AUS$1.367,47 (transaction on the 19th of March) because that charge was done totally behind my back (ie sheer theft !).
The TaxClub is still disputing my charge-back of $4.713,28 but their bank can't do anything because I had my card number changed !
I have defended my dispute against the TaxClub with my bank with concrete evidence (email conversations with the TaxClub) and I am pretty confident this will finally be the (happy) end of the story !
However it has caused me many headaches and sleepless nights
Jan de Jager, Queensland, Australia