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H&R Block

Nation's leading tax-preparation service.

Headquarters: 4400 Main St.
Kansas City, MO 64111
Employees: 9,200
CEO: Russ Smyth
Stock Symbol: HRB

Website: http://www.hrblock.com

Career Site

The busiest time of the year for H&R Block is the days leading up to April 15. That's because the company is the nation's leading tax-preparation service.

In 2009, the company served 24 million customers at nearly 13,000 company-owned and franchised offices along with its TaxCut software.

H&R Block, Inc. operates in tax and business services under the brands H&R Block and RSM McGladrey. H&R Block provides income tax return preparation and related products to clients in the United States, Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom through its retail offices, software, and online. RSM McGladrey offers national accounting, tax and business consulting services to mid-sized businesses.

H&R Block has prepared more than 450 million tax returns over the past 50 years.

The company reported fiscal 2009 revenues of $4.1 billion and net income of $485.7 million.

The company had 9,200 full-time employees and 133,700 including seasonal workers during tax time.

In May, H&R Block said it would cut 400 jobs and close 400 underperforming tax offices.


Henry and Richard Bloch were born and raised in Kansas City, the second and third sons of a prominent Kansas City lawyer. Henry graduated from the University of Michigan, while Richard graduated from the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania. (Older brother Leon studied law at the University of Missouri-Columbia.) During Henry's junior year, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor and he enlisted in the Army Air Corps, which eventually sent him to Harvard Business School to study for a military career. While there, a chance visit to the library played a pivotal role in the birth of the brothers' business.

"I always wanted to do something different, something more than just a job, something to contribute to society," Henry recalls. "And my brothers and I were always thinking up different businesses we could start, but none of them felt right. Then one day I saw a little pamphlet in the Harvard library that gave me the idea we were looking for."

The "little pamphlet" was a copy of a speech a Harvard professor had delivered to a group of insurance men. In it, he said there were three kinds of business: big business, small business, and labor. "Big business and labor were both very powerful, but small business really had no one to turn to," he said, "and small business was really the backbone of this country. The future", he declared, "would be in helping small businesses."
Henry excitedly wrote his brothers about his vision of providing accounting, temporary workers, collection, management services, and more for small business.

The full list included well over a hundred services - even income tax preparation.

Henry worked as a stockbroker briefly after he got out of the Air Force. Then, with a $5,000 loan from his aunt, the 24-year-old Henry rented a storeroom office for $50 a month and opened United Business Company. Working with his brother Leon, Henry landed a bookkeeping assignment for a hamburger stand eight blocks south of the rented Main Street office. More accounts followed and the business grew. Eventually, Leon returned to law school, and Richard became Henry's partner.

On Jan. 25, 1955, Henry and Richard Bloch replaced United Business Company with a new firm that specialized exclusively in income tax return preparation: H&R Block Inc. Within weeks, the company grossed nearly a third of the annual volume United Business Company had taken years to develop. The IRS was about to stop filling out taxpayers' forms in New York, too, so H&R Block opened seven offices there in 1956.

A year later, H&R Block began opening franchise offices, and H&R Block doors swung open on Main Streets across the country. The company went public on Feb. 13, 1962, with a $300,000 offering - 75,000 shares at $4 per share. H&R Block became listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1969.


- Medical Benefits: Options: PPO, HMO, EPP. We offer a broad, comprehensive protection plan that will fit your personal needs.
- Adoption Assistance: Associates are eligible for up to $3,000 per child to assist with recognized adoption expenses.
- Domestic Partner Plan: We extend medical and dental coverage to domestic partners in exclusive relationships as well.
- Dental Benefits: Whether or not you elect medical coverage, you can choose dental benefits for you, your spouse/partner or dependents.
- Vision Plan: From frames to contact lenses, we've got you covered.
- Life Insurance AD&D: We are in the financial security business so life insurance and accidental death and dismemberment are important components to our benefits package.
- Disability Benefits: Our Long-Term Disability plan provides continuing income when an illness or injury prevents you from working for an extended period of time.
- Flexible Spending Account: We know that medical and dependent care bills can add up. That's why we offer flexible spending accounts as an attractive way to use tax-free dollars to cover those costs. Our dependent care spending account is available for children or for an elderly or disabled parent.
- Stock Purchase Plan: H&R Block believes in its future - we want you to as well. You may have part of your regular compensation withheld from your paycheck on a monthly basis to use in purchasing Block stock in your name - and you can withdraw shares credited to your account at any time.
- Vacation: Time away - it's crucial. In fact, we let you start accruing vacation time from the date you're hired.
- Tuition Assistance Plan: We encourage you to make life-long learning a priority. That's why for our full-time associates, we'll prepay up to $5,250 per calendar year for tuition, books and enrollment fees after one year of employment.
- 401(k) Savings Plan: As an H&R Block associate you're eligible to enroll in our 401(k) savings plan - and receive our generous match of dollar for dollar on the first 5 percent of your contributions!

Updated May 19, 2010