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      September 27, 2020

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Tax Software

  1. TurboTax
  2. E-file
  3. Tax Slayer
  4. eSmart Tax
  5. Liberty Tax
  6. Tax Act

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Best Tax Software

What's the best tax software for preparing your federal and state returns? In the past, many taxpayers either tried to slog through the paperwork on their own or spent huge amounts of money to hire a professional tax preparer. Of course, in today's digital age, it should come as no surprise that more than 53 million people use tax software to prepare and file their returns online.

One of the most compelling reasons to use a reputable tax software package is because of the constant changes to tax law. Figuring out what exemptions you qualify for, what income requires you to pay additional taxes, and how to claim any deductions can be challenging and also have a major impact on whether you get a big refund - or owe big time!

Continue reading below reviews

Best Reviews


2020

Tax Software Reviews

5 stars
H&R Block

H&R BLOCKTopConsumerReviews.com Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award

H&R Block offers the most comprehensive tax software on the market. Whether you want to buy the program on a disc, download it from their store, or do absolutely everything online, your options are wide open - and include access to more than 12,000 retail office locations if you need in-person guidance. From free filing of basic Federal returns to affordable packages for the self-employed, H&R Block should be your first choice if you're looking for the best all-around tax prep software.

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4.5 stars
TurboTax

TURBOTAX

Who's better known for DIY tax prep than TurboTax? This market leader continues to excel when it comes to ease-of-use, new features, and options for live CPA review and advice if needed. Although TurboTax comes in second place because of its higher pricing and lack of in-person assistance, this tax software is still an extremely trustworthy choice for most taxpayers.

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3.5 stars
E-File

E-FILE

E-file is our favorite choice for people who have a simple tax return and want the lowest-priced option for filing their taxes. While this tax software doesn't have all of the bells and whistles offered by the big-name tax prep companies, it gives customers all of the basics necessary to file an accurate, timely return.

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3 stars
Tax Slayer

TAX SLAYER

TaxSlayer is one of the only tax software programs that offers free e-filing for simple Federal and State returns, and a free upgraded package for active-duty military. But this tax prep platform doesn't have as many features as some of our higher-ranked providers, and customers trying to use TaxSlayer to file last-minute returns encountered big problems.

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3 stars
eSmart Tax

ESMART TAX

eSmart Tax is the new-and-improved online tax program offered by Liberty Tax. It's priced competitively, and you're guaranteed to get the largest possible refund. And, if you wind up needing in-person help, there's probably a Liberty Tax office located near you. But, this tax prep software is missing some of the features included by higher-ranked providers, keeping eSmart Tax towards the bottom of our rankings.

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2.5 stars
Liberty Tax

LIBERTY TAX

Liberty Tax is popular among taxpayers who like the security of knowing there's probably an in-person office nearby if they get stuck while preparing their return online or if they want a free double-check by a professional before filing. Unfortunately, Liberty Tax is the only tax software in our review that has zero free filing options - even their sister site, eSmart Tax, offers a $0 plan. And, with a challenging-to-navigate website, Liberty Tax winds up at the bottom of our rankings.

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2 stars
Tax Act

TAX ACT

TaxAct has a wide variety of tax prep software options, from basic free federal filing to more advanced programs for freelancers - available as an online form or downloadable software. You can get your refund via check, direct deposit, or as an American Express debit card, and TaxAct will tack on a bonus from a retailer like Amazon or Nike if you choose to get some of your refund as a gift card. But, recent user reviews indicate that TaxAct is having major problems with their customer support, leaving people with unanswered questions for more than a week.

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Continued from above

Tax software can save you a lot of time and stress by staying up-to-date on each change made by the IRS, so that your return is accurate to the penny. But with all of the different options out there, how can you decide which tax software is right for you?

Here are several factors to keep in mind:

  • Complexity of Your Return. If you're a small business owner who owns a home and has numerous investments, your return will be much more complicated than a single person with no dependents and renting an apartment. Make sure the tax software you choose fits your situation.
  • Format. Do you need or prefer to have a tax prep program that can be downloaded to a laptop rather than used 100% online? If your internet connection is limited, you may want a program that lets you work offline all or most of the time, with options to file your return on paper as well as via e-file.
  • Live Help. If you're unsure of yourself when putting together your return, you may feel more reassured if you choose a company that offers help in real time from tax professionals. Some services give you that assistance via phone and/or live chat, while others maintain brick-and-mortar offices throughout the US that you can visit in person. Be sure to check if these services are included with the purchase of the tax software or if you'll have to pay extra for them.
  • Cost. What will you spend to prepare and file your tax return? Is it comparable to what you'd pay for tax software on a competitor site? Most services don't include state preparation and filing in their federal tax prep packages, so look for those additional fees if that applies to your situation.

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Tax Software available today. We hope this information helps you choose the right package for your needs, so that you can file your returns accurately and easily!

Major Tax Software Vendor Crashes On Important Due Date

A career spent doing tax work is a career free of of much, if any, real hardship. That is something that one realizes in retirement after forty years comparing notes with classmates who had, just as ...

Published:  Wed, 16 Sep 2020 05:40:00 GMT



Tax Management Software Market 2019 - Industry Size, Share, Dynamics, Status, Outlook and Opportunities: 2026

The globaltax management softwaremarket size is projected to reach USD 11.19 billion by the end of 2026. The increasing demand for automated software will have a direct impact on the growth of the ...

Published:  Fri, 18 Sep 2020 03:22:00 GMT



Sales Tax Software Market 2020 Global Insights and Technology Advancement - Thomson Reuters, Xero, Wolters Kluwer, Avalara

"Global Sales Tax Software Market: Size, Trends & Forecasts (2018-2022)" research study is segmented on the basis of applications, technology, geography and types. The report provides a detailed Sales ...

Published:  Wed, 23 Sep 2020 04:53:00 GMT



Why is advanced payroll software so popular among small business owners?

As a result, all business owners now depend on this technology to keep their daily business operations running. Few businesses would be able to operate without continuous access to the internet. This ...

Published:  Sat, 26 Sep 2020 06:28:00 GMT



IRS offers reprieve on tax returns filed late due to CCH software outage

The Internal Revenue Service is giving taxpayers and practitioners some extra time if they tried to file their returns on Sept. 15 through CCH Axcess, but were unable to do so because of a system ...

Published:  Fri, 25 Sep 2020 11:10:00 GMT



Canopy Releases Feature Updates for Its Practice Management and Tax Resolution Software

Canopy, the leading cloud-based practice management platform for accounting professionals, today announced new features and updates across its softwar ...

Published:  Wed, 23 Sep 2020 03:00:00 GMT



What to Do After You've Filed an Income Tax Extension

The Treasury recently announced tax changes and updates in response to COVID-19. Updates include an extension until July 15, 2020 for all taxpayers that have a filing or payment deadline that normally ...

Published:  Fri, 25 Sep 2020 16:13:00 GMT



The IRS Sets a Trap for Cryptocurrency Tax Cheats

The IRS won't say how many taxpayers have checked the crypto box for 2019. But Dan Hannum, chief operating officer of ZenLedger, a crypto tax-prep software firm, thinks a total of fewer than 150,000 ...

Published:  Fri, 25 Sep 2020 17:03:12 GMT



UN proposal to amend definition of royalty brings certainty; it does not address software related tax issues

UN proposal to amend definition of royalty brings certainty; it still does not address all software related tax issues ...

Published:  Tue, 15 Sep 2020 23:46:44 GMT



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