Optima Tax Relief Review: Alan Thicke Recommends, but Should You Buy? 21

We get many calls from people that almost hired Optima Tax Relief, and we find that most people did not like what they heard from them. In this review we will go over the information we have learned about Optima Tax Relief’s fees and practices based on reviews placed on the internet (and those that have mysteriously been “not recommended” by Yelp), information clients have told us when they spoke to Optima first, and a former employee of Optima.

Optima Tax Relief Fees

The fees for Optima Tax Relief seem to range from $950 for a basic case review with no resolution, to upwards of $18,000. We have heard some people quoted a monthly rate of $450 with a $950 initial fee, and others have been quoted flat fees, typically in the range of $5,000. According to Laura K. on Yelp, she “Paid them $15,000.00, you read that right – and in two years they literally have not done much to assist, just pawn my case off to someone else, then someone else etc. ”

Our fees at TRP are much less, with us starting most cases for $375.

Why the huge fees from Optima? Most of it is probably due to advertising. If you hear it on the radio, you generally are paying more for it. Radio advertised companies have a very high customer acquisition cost. When you hear Alan Thicke recommend Optima Tax Relief, that endorsement cost is passed right onto your case fee.

Tax return preparation is also a high fee Optima charges. As with any tax relief firm, if you are quoted on tax preparation for your case before they have looked at the data, be sure you are being charged the highest rate for tax preparation and not actually based on the amount of schedules required to complete.

Why are the fees substantially lower from TRP? We do not have high customer acquisition costs and do not do radio advertising. Half of our business comes from referrals and half comes form internet searches.

Optima Tax Relief is Not a Law Firm

When you hire Optima, you are hiring a sales company with a revolving door when it comes to employees. Cases are constantly handed off from one representative to the other and people are constantly quitting. The people working at Optima have no personal obligation to complete your case. Should Optima Tax Relief have a bad financial year and shut down, the client is out of luck and their case could be incomplete. Recent tax relief firms that have closed include JK Harris, Nationwide Tax Relief, American Tax Relief, and many others, leaving their clients in the dust. Additionally, much, if not all of your communication with these “tax relief firms” is not covered by an attorney-client privilege.

When you hire a tax law firm like Tax Resolution Professionals, the firm cannot just close down and not finish your case. The attorneys assigned are obligated to complete your case from start to finish, regardless of how this month’s sales are. Most tax relief firms are running month to month financially, and could close at any time.

Optima Tax Relief Reviews

Optima has the appearance of good reviews, but once you click the “Not Reccomended Reviews” on Yelp one can see their true complaints. Yelp’s Not Reccomended Reviews are often some of the best reviews to see if a company is legitimate. It is thought by many that those who pay for Yelp advertising have one star reviews thrown into the not recommended category, if this is true, Optima is good proof of this. In Optima’s not recommended reviews, there are over 100 reviews of 1 star.

Here are some key complaints from former clients:

From Susan B., who felt Optima did nothing for her, “They reduced NO penalties, NO interest , my balance is higher, and I can’t get answers on how long I’m supposed to pay this exorbitant amount, and I’m out &5,000!I would NEVER recommend this company to anyone. They ruined my life. If I could give NO stars I would.”

From Jervey H., who found out from a lawyer he later hired, that Optima did not even work on his case, “Optima took us for a total of $18,500 before we finally fired them. Then we hired another lawyer that only charged us $2500 to go to the IRS and work out a payment. Optima refused to give us our money back. Even after the IRS told us that optima had never even contacted them, they wouldn’t.”

The list goes on and on of unhappy customers.

From a Former Employee

We spoke with a former employee of Optima, who had some OK things to say about it.  In this industry there are many tax relief companies that literally take your money and do nothing, so its refreshing to hear that Optima does actually work on your case. They said that Optima does have a high turnover and cases do get passed on to different people. This could explain some of the complaints where people felt their case was not worked on.

Optima is a boiler room sales scenario. High pressure salespeople take the consultation calls, not anyone licensed to actually help you. This usually leads to unhappy customers, as clients are promised one thing then delivered something else.

For more about fraudulent tax relief companies, see our big tax relief company guide here.

Better Off Hiring a Tax Law Firm

If you were thinking of hiring Optima Tax Relief, you are much better off hiring a qualified tax law firm and having a consultation with an actual tax attorney. The consultation and subsequent case is then covered by attorney client privilege and the law office can’t just close on you leaving you to deal with your own IRS or State tax case.

If you are only receiving Social Security, Disability, or otherwise have a fixed, low income with no assets, you may want to try doing an Offer in Compromise yourself. You can see our Offer in Compromise guide for help with this.

If you have a tax lien and already have paid off the debt or are in a payment plan for less than $25,000, please see our guide: How to Withdraw A Tax Lien.

Need help with your back due tax debt? Fill out our contact form or call us at (888) 515-4829 and you will have a free, no obligation consultation with one of our expert tax attorneys!

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21 thoughts on “Optima Tax Relief Review: Alan Thicke Recommends, but Should You Buy?

  • shaun wright

    I have always seen Optima as the number one tax relief service and I suppose that is because of their marketing. I almost contacted them but my search brought me here and I think I will be contacting you instead and save money.

    • Johnathan Retty

      i contacted both and i found out the truth. optima sucks you in with a lower intro fee, then they charge you 10% of the tax debt. i ended up hiring trp – they charge hourly, and they are almost done with my case, and its costing way less than 10%

  • Bryan Cortez

    I talked to Optima prior to finding your offer in compromise guide, excellent guide and very well worded. If I cannot do it myself I will be calling you guys.

  • Kevin Gordon

    I did a bit of research on optima tax relief… I think im going dodge that bullet and go with you guys instead! Thanks for the heads up!

  • Anonymous

    the good thing about optima is they do the work, the bad thing is they kind of lure you in with that initial fee and you dont know what to expect later

  • G. Espinosa

    I looked up optima tax relief for my dad, ended up finding a lot of hidden bad reviews, and told him to stay away. Apparently theyre known for frequently transferring cases after collecting the initial payments. We would rather deal with a real law firm.

  • Quinn Chesire

    I am suprised Alan Thicke represented them with all the complaints they had, but he probably did not know and may he RIP.

    Optima Tax Relief overall is just not a good company, they are not as awful as some but just not that good either. You guys looks legit.

  • Zoolander

    optima tax relief sucks. from what i understand they come out with a low price to get you in then later the fees are huge. someone told me they paid $900 then later they wanted $18,000

  • John Braunsdorf

    Hello To All My Fellow Americans,
    I do admit falling prey to the Gimmick of Optima Tax Relief. Yes, I spent 10K to have them help me and I got nothing in return. Optima Tax Relief plays off the fears of the IRS coming after you. In the end, I had to settle my debt and I do admit I owed 90K+. but again this is my own issue. I guess the old adage is true, “If its to good to be true, it is”
    I have no way to get the money stolen from me from Optima Tax Relief. but I will be filling a complaint with the BBB and any other blogs and sites so I can prevent these globalist criminals from prey upon others.