Justin Elliott

Reporter

Photo of Justin Elliott

Justin Elliott has been a reporter with ProPublica since 2012, where he has covered money and influence in the Obama and Trump administrations, the American Red Cross, and TurboTax maker Intuit. He has produced stories for outlets including the New York Times and National Public Radio, and his work has spurred congressional investigations and changes to federal legislation.

Among other honors, his work has been awarded an Investigative Reporters and Editors award and, with the Trump Inc. podcast team, a duPont-Columbia award. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Brown University in history and classics.

Justin’s GnuPG/PGP key is available on the Ubuntu keyserver. The key ID is 2C353E48 and the fingerprint is 2305 FAB2 8F0D DEA1 FB4D 176A BDE5 0826 2C35 3E48.

He can be reached on Signal and WhatsApp at (774) 826-6240.

Your Neighborhood Might Be a Coronavirus Hot Spot, but New York City Refuses to Release the Data

Some local governments have published where coronavirus cases appear, down to the neighborhood level. New York City has made public only county-by-county data, making it difficult to see which communities are being hardest hit.

Work in Government, Finance or an Industry Affected by the Trump Administration’s Bailouts? Talk to Us.

Coronavirus has triggered a global economic crisis. We are trying to cover it — and we need your help.

As Coronavirus Cases Rise, Members of Some Ultra-Orthodox Jewish Communities Continue to Congregate

On Wednesday afternoon in New York City, a large group of men moved prayers outside, but huddled together in spite of public health directives.

TurboTax’s Bid to Buy Free Tax Prep Competitor Might Violate Antitrust Law, Experts Say

“Allowing a near-monopolist to eliminate a maverick competitor poses obvious risks of harm,” said one former DOJ lawyer of Intuit’s proposed Credit Karma acquisition. “It’s hard to imagine any reason why this should be allowed.”

Steve Bannon’s Use of Private Jet Linked to Chinese Businessman Could Violate Campaign Finance Law

The former Trump adviser used a plane apparently owned by businessman Guo Wengui. Americans are barred from receiving services for campaigns donated by foreign nationals.

TurboTax and Others Charged at Least 14 Million Americans for Tax Prep That Should Have Been Free, Audit Finds

Tax software companies made around $1 billion in revenue by charging people who were eligible to file for free.

Donald and Ivanka Trump Were Involved in Inauguration’s Inflated Payments to Family Business, New Suit Says

“Members of the Trump family were aware of and involved in the negotiation of this unconscionable contract,” the District of Columbia’s attorney general wrote in the suit.

Treasury Inspector General Probes Possible Trump Tax Break Abuses

The examination of potential abuses of the opportunity zone break meant to help the poor comes after stories in ProPublica and The New York Times.

How to File Your State and Federal Taxes for Free in 2020

TurboTax and other tax prep services advertised themselves as “free,” but we found several ways that they tricked people into paying. Here's our guide to preparing and filing your taxes without falling into a trap.

IRS Reforms Free File Program, Drops Agreement Not to Compete With TurboTax

The changes come after ProPublica’s reporting showed how TurboTax maker Intuit tricked customers into paying for tax prep they could have gotten for free.

TurboTax Tricked Customers Into Paying to File Taxes. Now Several States Are Investigating It.

ProPublica revealed that TurboTax maker Intuit charged millions of Americans for tax filing services they were eligible to receive for free. Now multiple state attorneys general have opened investigations into the company.

An Opportunity Zone Group Called Our Story About a Yacht Club Getting Tax Breaks “Lurid.” We Respond.

A think tank that pushes the big Trump tax break accused us of omissions. Its statement has some curious omissions of its own.

A Trump Tax Break To Help The Poor Went To a Rich GOP Donor’s Superyacht Marina

Wealthy donors Wayne Huizenga Jr. and Jeff Vinik lobbied then-Gov. Rick Scott for the lucrative tax break — and won it. Poorer communities lost out.

Billionaires Keep Benefiting From a Tax Break to Help the Poor. Now, Congress Wants to Investigate.

In response to reporting by ProPublica and others that show the opportunity zone tax break helping the politically connected, members of Congress are calling for changes in the law.

The IRS Tried to Hide Emails That Show Tax Industry Influence Over Free File Program

After ProPublica sued the IRS, the agency released emails that show it has allowed the tax preparation industry to write the rules.

How a Tax Break to Help the Poor Went to NBA Owner Dan Gilbert

After a lobbying effort, Dan Gilbert, billionaire founder of Quicken Loans, won special tax status for wealthy areas of downtown Detroit where he owns billions worth of property.

Inside TurboTax’s 20-Year Fight to Stop Americans From Filing Their Taxes for Free

Using lobbying, the revolving door and “dark pattern” customer tricks, Intuit fended off the government’s attempts to make tax filing free and easy, and created its multi-billion-dollar franchise.

IRS-Funded Review Confirms TurboTax Hid Free Filing From Search Engines, but Says There’s No Need for Major Changes

An outside firm echoed ProPublica’s reporting but defended the oversight of the tax-prep program meant to help millions of Americans file their taxes for nothing.

Trump’s Tax Law Threatened TurboTax’s Profits. So the Company Started Charging the Disabled, the Unemployed and Students.

The move by TurboTax maker Intuit to charge more lower-income customers has helped boost revenue.

One Trump Tax Cut Was Meant to Help the Poor. A Billionaire Ended Up Winning Big.

Opportunity zones are meant to spur new investment in poor areas. But Under Armour’s Kevin Plank is getting a tax break for investments that are not new and not in a poor tract. And Plank’s area was picked over neighborhoods that are actually poor.

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