Months Later, Nash County Woman Receives Quick Tax Refund
Posted July 11, 2006 10:18 a.m. EDT
Updated November 10, 2006 9:22 a.m. EST
NASH COUNTY, N.C. — After months of waiting, a Nash County woman who paid a service for a quick tax refund finally received her check.
Diane Seery contacted Five On Your Side
after she found out that she might not receive the refund.
Seery expected a $626 check about three weeks after paying Jackson-Hewitt $155 to prepare her taxes. That was in February.
"I was upset," Seery said. "I was really mad."
She never received the refund check, so she went back to the Jackson Hewitt Tax Service office to follow up.
"The lady that was there looked through the filing cabinet probably four or five times and she said to me, 'I can't find any of your paperwork,'" Seery said.
After weeks of confusion, Seery found out that someone else had received her check.
"You can tell it's not my signature," she told Five On Your side as she showed the signature on a copy of the canceled check.
It looked nothing like the signature she had just signed.
So, when Jackson Hewitt refused to replace her check and refund her fee, she called Five On Your Side.
"It's aggravating," Seery said. "I feel like they're calling me a liar."
In May, Five On Side spoke with people at several levels of Jackson-Hewitt, including its local owner, Paul Reinhardt.
Reinardt said he believed Seery picked up the check, saying his employees checked identification. But he said, they did not make a copy of her identification because they "aren't required to."
But, he said, if the bank investigation showed Seery was right, he would "do her taxes for free."
"If I get it, I'll be thankful," Seery at the time.
She is thankful now.
A Jackson Hewitt corporate spokeswoman told WRAL that the bank that cashed the check took responsibility, and then the company's bank issued a new check.
Reinhardt did not immediately return calls from WRAL. But he did issue a refund for the $155 tax-preparation fee as he promised.