April 15, 2024 at 12:41 pm

Why You Shouldn’t Trust TurboTax’s AI Assistant’s Advice

by Trisha Leigh

Source: Shutterstock

No one likes filing taxes.

It’s an undertaking, even if your return is simple, and with so many people working side or gig jobs, working from home, and a hundred other changes since 2020, tax returns can cause significant anxiety.

And listen. The fact that TurboTax is using an AI assistant that doesn’t know what it’s talking about isn’t going to help.

Both TurboTax and H&R Block are utilizing this AI, meant to help people answer tax questions, but the chatbot definitely isn’t up to the task.

Source: Shutterstock

A reporter from The Washington Post asked the “Intuit Assist” bot fairly simple questions, like whether his child needed to file a return, and was given irrelevant and outright incorrect answers.

In fact, the bots were wrong a large percentage of the time – 50% with TurboTax and 30% with H&R Block.

Tax consultants, like Beverly Goodman from the wealth management firm EP Wealth Advisors clearly don’t feel as if their jobs are going to be threatened any time soon.

“I feel that my job as a tax professional is very secure.”

A spokesperson from H&R Block was defensive.

“Is it perfect, no. Will it ever be, probably not. Mainly because we have a very complicated taxation system with ambiguous wording.”

There are disclaimers about using the software, of course, but most people don’t read the fine print. And there isn’t much time left before the filing deadline for significant changes to be made.

Source: Shutterstock

It sounds like, as usual, a tax professional is the way to go if you don’t want to be led astray during tax season.

If you enjoyed that story, check out what happened when a guy gave ChatGPT $100 to make as money as possible, and it turned out exactly how you would expect.