Free Tax Software
Here is a list of potential free copies of tax software to use:
1) Free Taxcut Basic (Federal Only) in mail. I received a CD in the mail a few weeks ago from H&R Block that contained a free version of Taxcut Basic (Federal Only). Once you pop the CD in, it suggests you upgrade to the premium version with state tax preparation; however it will let you install the full Basic Taxcut.
2) Free or discounted Turbotax. If you are a Vanguard Flagship customer its free!
3) State Farm - Offering free tax software for customers.
4) Free tax software based on family's income level.
5) Free Taxcut Basic (Federal, Download only) at Download.com
6) Free TaxAct. A lesser known software that has a basic version that has been offered for free for several years.
Other tax preparation tips:
1) If you have some knowledge of your taxes then don't bother upgrading to the "premium" tax software - the only difference in the upgrade is extra instructional videos in how to deal with things like rental property, capital gains, small business, etc. The basic versions of the tax software will still let you fill in this material in your taxes.
2) Don't use e-file, instead mail your tax forms. I read in Deduct It! that the IRS only gets about 40% of paper returns transcribed into electronic format - this reduces the amount of data the IRS has to look for audit flags. If your rationale is your big refund check will be delayed and "time is money" then change your witholding so that you aren't due a big refund.
3) Don't even think about signing up for a "refund loan" from a company such as H&R Block. I assume 99.99% of people who read this, know this. For the 0.01% that don't - forget it; waste of money!
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