H&R Block Inc. said Wednesday that it has sent $25 prepaid debit cards to customers whose tax refunds were delayed by an electronic filing problem the company had this spring.
Gene King, a Block spokesman, said the company was unable to say how many cards went out. He said they were mailed this week and customers should see them soon.
The problem hit customers who claimed an education tax credit using Form 8863 through H&R Block as well as some other tax preparers.
In March, the Internal Revenue Service said filing problems affected about 10 percent of the 6.6 million tax returns that included the education tax credit form. The agency did not say how many came from any specific preparers.
“H&R Block appreciates that the issue involving the filing of Form 8863 this past tax season may have frustrated and inconvenienced impacted clients,” a statement from the Kansas City-based company said.
“H&R Block recently sent those clients who had their tax returns prepared and filed in company-owned locations its sincerest apologies and a $25 Emerald Card gift card to account for any processing delay and express thanks for their patience in this matter,” it said.
Two customers had sued Block over the problem, with plans to seek class action status to recover tax preparation fees.
Some Block customers said the refund delays had disrupted their lives because they had counted on using the money to pay bills, renew a commercial driver’s license for work or other financial needs.
The statement repeated Block’s earlier comment that the difficulties arose from processing the forms and not from any actions by its tax professionals.