My challenge this month was a continuation of my March Challenge, which was to pay someone to do my taxes. Unfortunately I was unprepared last month, but for April I made sure I had EVERYTHING ready. I had a folder with all of my pay stubs from my freelance gig, I had my T4E (it finally came in), my GST/HST number, and literally everything I had regarding my student loans. I wasn’t taking any chances.
When I arrived at H&R Block I was ready to kick some income tax butt. I told them that I would be doing my personal and sole proprietor (freelance/self-employed) taxes when I booked my appointment so I arrived feeling good about what was about to go down and felt like it was going to be an absolute breeze.
That was not the case.
I ended up sitting for half an hour waiting to meet with someone even though the office was literally empty. You could seriously hear crickets it was so dead.
Then when I finally met with my income tax expert, he seemed very uninterested in what he was doing. Maybe he was having a bad day or whatnot, but when it comes to my taxes I kinda want you to be on point.
I started asking him questions about what he was doing and he just ignored me. I also showed him my folder full of my sole prop stuff and when I kept mentioning my freelance gig, he didn’t listen to me at all.
How do I know he wasn’t listening to me? Well, when he was telling me how much I made last year, the total was just barely over $4,000. As a person who worked full-time hours for 9 months that number just didn’t make sense. When I asked him where he got that total he said it was money I received from Employment Insurance.
DUDE, I TOLD YOU SIX TIMES I WAS FREELANCING TOO!
Okay, so as I internally screamed I took out my overly-prepared income tax folder AGAIN and showed him all of the pay stubs. I guess it finally clicked because he looked a tad frightened.
He then said, “Sorry, this is too complicated. Someone else will have to do your taxes.”
WHAT?!!! I’ve been here for an hour and now you tell me this?! GUHHHHHHHHHHHHH.
I was then shuffled over to someone who could handle my “complicated” taxes and we got to work. I wanted to know everything he was doing since I wasted the last hour of my life learning nothing.
Want to know what I learned in the hour I spent with my new guy?
He barely said a word to me and wouldn’t answer any of my questions. When I mentioned my student loans he didn’t even acknowledge me. I just wanted some verbal confirmation that he understood what I was asking, but no luck.
At one point it felt like we weren’t even on the same planet, let alone sitting right across from each other
When he finally told me the amount that I owed the CRA, I was a tad shocked, but I was prepared (thank you savings account). I was curious why it was so much and he just brushed it off and said, “You were freelancing. What did you expect?”
Wow, thanks champ.
After two hours of awfulness it was time to get the heck outta there and vow never to return.
I guess you could say I completed my challenge, but ultimately it felt like I failed. I paid so much money for two people to “help” me with my taxes and I left feeling seriously ripped off.
To those of you reading this article and thinking, “Oh God, I have an appointment next week!” I just want to say that my experience may not be the norm.
My time spent getting income tax tortured could have been an isolated incident. There are probably other H&R Blocks out there with people who are incredible at what they do. People who will be happy to answer your questions and show you what they’re doing.
However, my time was a bag of butts, so I learned that I’d rather just do my taxes myself. It was an interesting experience, and one I would definitely not want to repeat.
So to those of you still finishing your taxes, I wish you mad amounts of good vibes and hope you get a great big tax return!