Still Trying to Get Money from Me – Has This Become the Norm?

Monday, May 24, 2010

I’m wondering if business schools have recently added a class called “How to Rake Your Customer?” It seems nearly imposible to find a completely honest and upfront entity to do business with. As with my previous post “Desperate Measures Online" (scroll down 3), this one addresses a similar situation I recently had with my C.P.A. We’ve been using his services for tax preparation for many years now. I drive 1 ½ hour to get my taxes done because I thought he was a pretty good tax man—expensive, but good and he had been recommended by an associate of his (soon realizing that was his buddy, but nonetheless, he was a good C.P.A.).

So here’s the rest of the story. We were buying a home last fall and the bank (very picky nowadays) wanted a note from our C.P.A. saying my pension (I’m retired) would continue until 2016—as it will. I called my tax guy and asked if he could write a letter stating that based on previous returns, it may do so. He said no, he couldn’t do that—I understood why, he does not know—no problem. He did ask which bank and who was doing the loan. A few days later, my lender got a form letter from the C.P.A. stating he was not allowed to release information regarding his clients. Didn’t matter, we got the loan and love the house.

So as scheduled this March, I go see the tax man to get the taxes done for 2009. Upon entering the office, his receptionist hands me a "contract" saying their new policy allows for billing for phone or other consultations—sign here. I read the paper and signed (laughing inside of course). When I went into his personal office, before he even greeted me, he asked if I had signed the “contract.” Now I do understand this new policy. After all, I only pay him to prepare my tax return. But I immediately questioned (in my mind of course) his tactics and lack of explaining this new policy to me.

So a month later, in the mail, I get my return to sign and mail to the I.R.S. and others. With that, was the bill for services rendered including a $50 consultation fee for 6 months earlier as well as a $50 consultation fee for the date of my tax appointment. Mind you, the real part of the bill was $525.00 for tax preparation (about $100 higher than last year). I couldn’t believe my eyes—what nerve! So I did what any frustrated, over-taxed and under patient person would do, I wrote him a letter.

“I’m a bit surprised, or maybe not, at your bold attempts at “sucking” money from your clients. Who by the way, have paid their bills, showed up to appointments on time, and faithfully recommended you to friends and family for services—not any longer.

I’m especially surprised at the tactics you used to try and get additional fees from your clients. Do you think we are all stupid? When your secretary (poor gal) hands me a “contract” to sign (right now of course, before the appointment), I’m not dumb enough that I don’t know what that’s all about. But, because the “contract” is dated with my signature, and I know you can’t legally bill me for past uninformed and useless consultation, I’ll sign, but at the point when I wrote my name on that paper, it was in question in my mind, “Do I really want to continue doing business with this guy?”

Your illegal attempts to collect “consultation” fees have failed. Not only am I not obligated to pay your fees as listed on your invoice dated 05/07/2010 (and will not), I will now take my business elsewhere; to somebody a tad more honest. Personally, I hope all your clients drop you like a hot potato; you don’t deserve their business.

Remember my first book about running a business, you should read it. It discusses the importance of honesty in business.Get some character, decency, honesty, and common sense and good luck with your future business, you’ll need it.”

Now maybe that’s a little harsh, but I am getting tired of “round-a-bout” business tactics used in our society. Are there any straight-forward, honest, or service oriented businesses around any longer? I ran a business for 15 years and I NEVER would have tried to pull this on my clients. Had he said, “I’m going to have to charge you a fee if you call me for information in the future” I probably would have kept him as my C.P.A.

Could this be one of the reasons for business failure?Share/Bookmark


Michael J Fox - My New Hero!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

While reading an interview with Michael J. Fox in the May issue of Reader’s Digest, I think I may have found my new favorite quote; check it out:

“Don’t spend a lot of time imagining the worst-case scenario. It rarely goes down as you imagine it will, and if by some fluke it does, you will have lived it twice.” Michael J. Fox

Is this for real? Did he really come up with this? I think I love this guy! This little quote, found by pure accident, could possibly change my life (and yours). I realize for every time someone says, “Don’t worry” they are basically intending the same message. But this is different. Here’s the story.

I’ve recently had this growing pain in my abdominal area. Of course I went to the doc and had some tests. Imaging showed the doc, not me, a mass in my abdomen (I will not get too specific, ahh!). After describing it to me, his following words to me were, “I don’t know what to make of this.” Of course on the outside, my demeanor showed a capable and calm lady waiting patiently for my physicians’ follow-up recommendation. A little different feeling on the inside; “Excuse me? You’re a doctor! What the hell do you mean you don’t know what to make of it???”

So off I go into nearly two weeks of “the waiting game.” And guess what happened when I finally went to the recommended Physician who might know what this is? You got it! It is of course, nothing to worry about. At least not worry to the point of losing sleep or drifting off into panic land. So basically, I lived a nightmare when I should have been living my wonderful life. Another small life lesson learned. Thank you Michael J. Fox, you’re two weeks too late this time, but I will never forget your words!Share/Bookmark


Welcome to My Blog!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Welcome to Blog Jog Day!! So glad you stopped by. Please enjoy my Blog then jog on over to to see another wonderful Blog!

If you would like to visit a different Blog in the jog, go to

Please don't forget to leave a comment or "Follow" this Blog while you're here!



Desperate Measures Online

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

I love the way you sign up for free trials and the company “accidentally” or under some other deceitful manner continues to bill you. The following is an actual e-mail series of transmissions I recently had with such a company. I signed up for a trial period to list my vacation rental. I didn’t see good results so I cancelled the account. Yes, I’m sarcastic, but I think one needs to be to see any action.

I received a notice that my free trial was up and I replied to cancel. I now have a charge for $29 on my credit card. Please credit back the charge and make sure this account and all my personal financial information is removed safely "please. My e-mail for confirmation is **********.
Thank you,

Hi Carol,
I do not see any account under the email address of *********. Please provide me with the email address you used to create your account and the last name of the credit card holder so that I can pull up your account.
Best Regards,
Customer Care

Hello Kristen,
Thank you for your response. The e-mail address is **********. We
recently changed e-mail addresses. The card charged in my
name, Carol *****.
Thank you,

Hi Carol,
Thank you for your email. I took a look at your account and did find the email request to cancel - however, a representative did call and leave a voice mail for you and also sent you an email informing you that your account was extended on the Free Trail for an additional 60 Days.
Your Free Trial ended April 21st - and you also received an email 7 days prior to the completion of the extended Free Trial. At this time I am not able to refund the last charge of $29.99 - however, since you already did pay for this month - would you like to keep it live on the site until May 20th - which is the last day before your next billing date?
Please let me know how you would like to proceed.

Hello Danielle,
Thank you for your e-mail. Now please do not be telling me you received my
request to cancel this account and did not do so because you say you left a
voice message which of course was never received. I asked you to cancel and
I appreciate that I need to do no more than that. Otherwise, one might
perceive this as a gimmick, or fraud. I know your company wouldn't want to
be viewed that way.
Also, I have a new e-mail address as you can probably see from our
Please remove the charge immediately. I will accept this has been done by
one e-mail from you stating so.
Thank you,
Carol Denbow

Thank you so much for your email - I am sorry you never received the voice mail or email sent to you regarding your 60 Day Extension. At this point I have refunded the last charge of $29.99 and have canceled your account.
Please note that at this time everything has been deleted - If you do decide to re-list - you will need to start from the beginning.

Thank you and have a beautiful day.



  © Blogger template The Professional Template II by 2009

Back to TOP