When to ask for consent

We use consent content when we need customers to agree to something. For example:

  • Before we process a payment
  • To make sure they accept Intuit terms and policies
  • Before we pass their personal, small business, or tax info to a third party
  • Before we use their tax info for anything other than taxes

In all cases, we want them to know their data is safe and will only be used in ways they’ve agreed to. Consent content should help customers:

  • Understand what they’re agreeing to
  • Know how their info will be shared and who it will be shared with
  • Know what they need to do or provide to move forward
  • Understand the benefits of sharing their info
  • Feel confident about their decision to give consent

Legal review

Send all consent content through legal review before it goes to development. If you make changes to existing consent content, send it through legal review again, before changes are deployed.

Legal review processes vary by team and project, so work closely with your product manager and design lead. Some teams have a dedicated legal contact.

Fixed (boilerplate) language

Some types of consent content require boilerplate language. This is fixed language that’s legally required or already part of the Intuit Design System. Check the links at the end of this guideline to see if the content you’re writing requires fixed language.

Like all other consent language, fixed language should go through legal review each time it’s used.

Voice and tone

Consent content should be:

  • Clear and transparent, but not alarming
  • Persuasive, but not forceful or pushy
  • Reassuring and warm, but not overly familiar or too casual

Describing agreement or offer benefits

We use our persuasive and engaging voices to help customers consider benefits and offers, get the best value, make good decisions, and feel sure about their choice to give consent or share their info.

Protecting customers and their data

We use our protective voice to let customers know they can trust us with their personal and financial info, without inducing fear.

First person versus second person

In consent content, we use first and second person alternately to create a 2-sided conversation. We use second person (you) when we’re speaking to them and first person (I) when they’re telling us something or responding to something we asked.

Reserve first person (I/me) for the following components within consent content, since they represent the customer’s side of the conversation.

  • Buttons (ex: I agree; I don’t agree)
  • Next to checkboxes (ex: I read and agree to the terms…)
  • Next to radio buttons (ex: I agree; No, don’t send me other offers)

Use second person (you) for consent content leading up to a button, checkbox responses, radio button responses, or other customer-response options, since it represents our side of the conversation.

Example: By selecting Continue, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.

Other style and usage guidelines

Agree, allow, consent, and give permission

  • Use “agree” or “I agree” and “I don’t agree” in most cases.
  • If the customer is agreeing to something that will be done by an Intuit brand, you can also use “allow [brand] to” or “agree to let [brand].”
  • When crafting Level 3 (data-as-consent) content, always use “I agree” and “I don’t agree” on radio buttons at the end of the main agreement.

Examples:

  • I agree
  • I don’t agree
  • By selecting Continue, you agree to our Terms and Conditions.
  • I read and agree to TurboTax’s privacy policy.
  • Do you agree to let TurboTax use your information to check your eligibility for the prepaid TurboTax Visa card?
  • By selecting Continue, you allow Intuit to verify your credit card.

Buttons, checkboxes, and radio buttons

See specific guidelines under each level of consent.

Check, choose, click, and select

Follow the usual guidelines for these terms, with this exception:

  • Don’t use “click” for buttons in consent content. Only use “select.” (Example: By selecting I agree, you acknowledge that we’ll charge your credit card…)
  • “Select” is preferred, but you can use “click” for links, navigation tabs, and entry fields, if you need to. (Example: For details, click the link.)

Headlines and subtext

  • Use headlines and subtext in consent content to engage customers in offers, introduce agreements, and help customers understand the main point of the screen.
  • Make them clear, meaningful, and not overly wordy or long.
  • Subtext is optional.
  • Headlines can wrap, but shouldn’t be longer than 2 lines in most cases.
  • Craft the language to meet customer, business, and legal needs. But always give customers the info they need to move forward with confidence. In most cases, this means helping them understand the benefits of taking action (the why), as well as the specific action they need to take or info they need to provide (the what).

3 levels of consent

We use 3 levels of consent to guide consent content design. The specific level depends on:

  • What type of customer info is being collected or shared
  • How the info will be used
  • What we need the customer to do to show consent

If you have multiple types of consent happening on the same screen, follow guidelines for the most stringent use case (highest level). For specific style guidelines for each level, see the links that follow.

Level 1: Informed consent

Informed consent content raises quick, simple awareness to let customers know what they’re agreeing to by clicking a specific button. Use it when there are no harmful or irreversible consequences for customers, and you don’t want to slow them down or raise a red flag.

Use it for:

  • Accepting terms and conditions or privacy policies
  • Disclaimers (with no serious consequences)
  • Offers to import data into QuickBooks, TurboTax, Mint, or ProConnect

Specific guidelines and fixed (boilerplate) language

Informed consent usually consists of a short agreement, followed by a primary action button and an optional secondary action button.

Use this boilerplate agreement:

  • By selecting [action button], you are allowing [brand] to [action(s) customer is consenting to].
  • Use a primary button to allow customers to accept the agreement and related consequences. (Ex: Add PLUS benefits; Continue; I agree)
  • Consider adding a secondary button to let customers decline the agreement or offer. (Ex: No thanks; Skip this; Start my taxes)

Level 2: Mindful consent

Mindful consent makes customers aware of a specific action that has consequences. For example, clicking a button that allows us to process their credit card payment. Use it when you want customers to pause and take clear, conscious action to ensure they know what they’re agreeing to.

Use it for:

  • Monetary transactions (processing a payment, moving money, etc.)
  • Opening a new financial account (debit or credit) or sending customers a new account card
  • Helping customers opt in to a service

Specific guidelines and fixed (boilerplate) language

Mindful consent usually consists of a single checkbox and an agreement, followed by a primary action button and an optional secondary action button. If multiple response options are needed, radio buttons (single-select) or stacked checkboxes (multi-select) can be used instead of the single checkbox.

  • Use content next to a single checkbox (or leading up to radio buttons or stacked checkboxes) to help customers slow down, read, and consciously acknowledge the agreement and its consequence before they check the box or make a selection.
  • Use action buttons to allow customers to confirm or back out of their decision to consent.
  • Use clear, direct language (like “I agree” or “Place my order” or “Charge my card”) on the primary button to make sure customers know clicking equals consent.
  • In most cases, use first person for content next to a single checkbox, and second person for content leading up to radio buttons or stacked checkboxes.
  • Use first person (or no pronoun) on buttons.
  • If the agreement can be printed, use this boilerplate link: Print or save this form.

Level 3: Data as consent

Data as consent raises the highest level of awareness to make sure customers understand exactly how their data will be used, especially when there are legal implications. For example, when we use the tax info they’ve given us to get their credit score or check eligibility for a credit card.

Use it for:

  • Sharing or using tax info for non-tax purposes (TurboTax 7216 agreement)
  • Requesting a tax extension from the IRS on behalf of a customer
  • Transactions where we’re legally required to collect an electronic signature or other personal data to confirm consent

Specific guidelines and fixed (boilerplate) language

Data as consent usually consists of 2 screens. The first screen describes the benefits of the agreement or offer. The second screen includes the main agreement and a form to collect the customer’s electronic signature or other data. Sometimes, it also includes legal language from the IRS or another party.

If the benefits are described elsewhere, you can omit the first screen and jump right into the agreement.

  • On the benefits screen, use the primary and optional secondary button to get the customer’s initial consent. (Examples: Sounds good; No thanks)
  • On the main agreement screen:
    Use this boilerplate language for the radio buttons in the form: I agree; I don’t agree
    Use the primary and optional secondary button to get the customer’s final consent. (Ex: Continue; Start my taxes)
  • If exact language from the IRS or other agency is required for legal reasons, display it exactly as it is written in a gray callout box to separate it from copy written by Intuit employees.
  • Do not display edited or paraphrased legal/IRS language in the gray callout box.
  • If the agreement can be printed, use this boilerplate link: Print or save this form.
  • TurboTax 7216 content must also follow other strict legal guidelines. To access them, go to the CG Consent Wiki and look for Content Design – 7216 Spec in the right rail, under Specs.