H&R Block provided a review of their 2015 tax season results during a call yesterday evening. Given its scale, Block's results are a good proxy for their entire tax season. The company estimates that it helped to prepare one of every seven returns filed this year. Block says it sold 5.1 million refund transfers and issued another 2.4 million Emerald Cards.
But instead of sticking to a nuts-and-bolts presentation of financial results, Block CEO William Cobb went on at length to discuss the issue of tax fraud.
According to Cobb, the growth is fraud is being enabled by the arrival of new tools that help people file their returns without the help of a paid preparer. As the CEO of a national tax prep company, Cobb is well positioned to understand the shift in how people do their taxes. Millions of people prefer a "do-it-yourself" ("DIY") solution. DIY costs less, and to be honest, many returns are so simple that even a novice can do the job in thirty minutes.