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For more about this subject, I highly recommend David Cay Johnston's Perfectly Legal. There is an excellent chapter about the number of people who use these (and advance tax refund loans, which amount to almost the same thing) and how companies like H&R Block are making a staggering amount of money off of people who choose to use this service. The chapter also includes footnotes that might lead to some interesting references, but I can't locate my copy right now to suggest any (sorry).

Aparrantly if you charge it all up front as a "fee" it isn't usury.
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