TurboTax, a popular tax filing software recently announced that it will offer users free upgrade to the premier version of the software on 7 February, 2015. The catch: only TurboTax Deluxe users will be able to avail it.
A spokeswoman for the company told the press that starting the coming Saturday, users will be able to click on a link in their TurboTax Deluxe software to upgrade to the home or business version of the Premier version of TurboTax. The announcement has outraged devoted users of the desktop version of the TurboTax Deluxe because, for this season, the Premier version will effectively replace the older tax preparation software after the free upgrade.
Users who bought TurboTax Deluxe software this year were angered by the company’s decision to remove capital gain reporting capabilities from the new edition. Self-employed taxpayers, to whom this feature was indispensable, found themselves forced to spend 50% more than the TurboTax Deluxe on buying the Premier version. TurboTax is an operation of Inuit (INTU), a company that specializes in making financial software solutions.
The Deluxe version’s hitherto loyal following protested on Amazon and tax software forums. Meanwhile, TurboTax’s H&R department tried to placate angered users with free updates for their copies of the software.
Inuit’s CEO, Brad Smith has apologized to buyers for not explicitly alerting them of the change beforehand.
The company began damage control by offering $25 refunds to all TurboTax Deluxe customers whose process of filing their 2014 Taxes was hampered by the changes in the Deluxe version of the software.
Next, the company offered free upgrades to the Premier version and has promised to restore the deducted capabilities to TurboTax Deluxe next year.
Buyers of TurboTax Deluxe receive their upgrades starting Saturday.