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A Public Service Message from H&R Block: Definitely Do Your Taxes

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April 10, 2023

While other tax companies get cheeky with advice encouraging people to not do their taxes, recent H&R Block data reveals that nearly 70% of Americans believe jailtime could be a penalty for not doing them

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (April 10, 2023) – With only eight days remaining in tax season, H&R Block (NYSE: HRB) is urging taxpayers to definitely do your taxes. Despite what many have recently heard about not doing taxes, this public service message is for the 121 million people who are eligible to file. And it serves as both a reality-check and tax preparation advice because doing taxes is the right and fiscally responsible thing to do.

America agrees.
According to a new *survey by H&R Block and OnePulse, when it comes to penalties for not doing your taxes, nearly 70% of respondents believe you could go to jail. According to respondents, other penalties include fines (79%) and garnished wages (60%).

A message from the pros.
The “definitely do your taxes” message is highlighted in a new H&R Block campaign created by Ogilvy that launches today on brand social, digital and radio channels. In it, H&R Block tells the story of what can happen when taxes aren’t done which, technically, is illegal.

“H&R Block has an obligation to remind people that a consequence of not doing your taxes is not getting the refund you deserve. And, as tax season comes to a close, this campaign and our survey results serve as a reminder to dutiful taxpayers to do your taxes, including the 22% of Gen Zers who wait until the ‘last second’ to file,” said Jill Cress, Chief Marketing and Experience Officer of H&R Block. “We are a people-centric company and its our business to take taxes seriously, so our message is clear – definitely do your taxes and remember that you can always count on Block for the best expertise, care, and maximum refund, guaranteed.”**

A closer look at the survey data.

In March, H&R Block surveyed 1,000 tax filers to get their thoughts on the consequences of not doing taxes, and here’s what they said:

  • Overall, respondents believe the top three consequences of not doing your taxes are:
    • Pay a fine (79%)
    • Wages garnished(60%)
    • Criminal charges (43%)
  • An overwhelming majority of America – 68% exactly – believe jail time could be a consequence.
    • Of the 68% who believe jail time is a possibility, some believe repercussions could be worse “if you owe enough” or “if you’ve gone long enough without paying.”
  • America is divided by demographic in terms of potential punishment related to not doing your taxes.
    • Across all age groups, the top consequence is believed to be paying a fine.
    • Respondents under 24 (Gen Z) are more likely to believe consequences will be criminal in nature—specifically criminal charges and jail.
    • Other age groups (25+) believe consequences to be more financial in nature—specifically, wages garnished or bank account frozen.
    • Of all demographics, 5% of people believe that the death penalty could be a potential fine for not doing your taxes.

“We kicked off the year inviting people to celebrate tax season, and as it comes to a close, we’re inviting everyone to end the celebration the right way,” said Cress. “Millions of refunds are waiting to be claimed, and with the average refund being nearly $3,000, it’s important to do your taxes so you’re not leaving money on the table. The good news is that H&R Block is open early and late until Tax Day, April 18, and our tax pros are here – in person or virtually – to help you get you the maximum refund you deserve.”

Good news – if the April 18 deadline is missed, help is still available.

If you don’t file by April 18, you may incur one or both of these penalties if you owe the IRS – a Failure to File penalty and a Failure to Pay penalty. Both include fees you are charged every month you don’t file or pay. However, there are options from filing an extension to setting up a payment plan with the IRS. Bottom line – whatever your circumstances, don’t wait or be intimidated by the process. H&R Block is here to help you sort it all out and get your maximum refund, guaranteed, guided by the expertise of 60,000 tax pros with an average 10 years of experience.

Definitely do your taxes. Find a tax pro today at hrblock.com.


About H&R Block
H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) provides help and inspires confidence in its clients and communities everywhere through global tax preparation services, financial products, and small business solutions. The company blends digital innovation with human expertise and care as it helps people get the best outcome at tax time and also be better with money using its mobile banking app, Spruce. Through Block Advisors and Wave, the company helps small-business owners thrive with innovative products like Wave Money, a mobile-first, small-business bank account and bookkeeping solution, that manages bookkeeping automatically. For more information, visit H&R Block News.