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Taxpayer Gets a Break in Jackson Hewitt Lawsuit

(CN) - Jackson Hewitt must face a class action lawsuit that claims the tax-preparation company failed to comply with Missouri law in arranging refund anticipation loans.

Sherita Fugate claimed that the company violated the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act and failed to follow the state's rules for credit service organizations.

The trial court ruled in Jackson Hewitt's favor, agreeing with the company that it was not a credit services organization.

But the Missouri Court of Appeals' western district reversed the decision on March 1 and sent the case back to the trial court, agreeing with Fugate that she owed a debt to Jackson Hewitt, although that debt was paid through another company.

"Nothing in the [state law's] definition of 'credit services organization' as a person who provides services 'in return for the payment of money or other valuable consideration' requires that it be a direct payment," Judge James Welsh wrote on behalf of the court.

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