For those who are unaware, the tax relief industry is a highly fragmented one. Companies offering services to the public tend to be either one of the “Big Nationals” or smaller local practitioners. Well, in recent years, there have been some Big Nationals in the spotlight for reportedly violating consumer protection laws (e.g. TaxMasters, JK Harris and “Tax Lady” Roni Deutch). One other such company was American Tax Relief.

The FTC originally filed charges against American Tax Relief in September 2010. These charges included that the defendants falsely claimed they already had significantly reduced the tax debts of thousands of people and falsely told individual consumers they qualified for tax relief programs that would significantly reduce their tax debts. In the end, these clients paid in excess of $100 million for services and received minimal, if any, resolution to their tax problems.

Well, as a partial consolidation, the Federal Trade Commission said it is mailing more than $16 million in refund checks to 18,571 consumers who had paid money to American Tax Relief. All in all, these consumers will receive about 16% of the money the lost. The sad part is that many are still in hot water with the IRS; simply because they picked the wrong company to represent them before the IRS.

So how do you know if the company you are engaging to handle your case is reputable? Unfortunately, with loose regulation of the tax representation industry, you don’t. But here’s where we can help! If you visit our IRS Debt Representation page, you can receive our FREE whitepaper 5 Questions To Ask Any Tax Resolution Firm BEFORE Paying Them A Dime. On top of that, we’d also be happy to discuss your situation absolutely free of charge. Simply follow the instructions on the page and before you know it, you’ll have a professional representative on your side to help you stop your IRS worries for good!

For more details on the American Tax Relief case, check out Accounting Today’s article: Tax Relief Company Agrees to Turn over $16 Million to Bilked Consumers.