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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 03-15-2007, 08:12 AM   #21
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem
wab,
Thanks, that's a great deal (esp for those who don't need to file a state return).
I filled out my taxes already (still need to mail them in) and used Taxcut. I like the program and will probably use it again, but I have two gripes:
-- It seems like every year they make it harder to see the actual tax form that is associated with the interview questions.
-- Related to the above: the "Where does this come from?" function is incomplete/clunkier than it should be.

I could do with less wiz-bang video/animation and a little more concentration on the nuts/bolts of completing a tax return. I'll probably look at Tax Act and a demo version of Turbotax before automatically heading back to TaxCut next year.
You could do the TaxAct online version for free, even efile the fed for free. What you do not get for the free version, is the ability to import that next year, and some of the tax 'help'. But, for just $8, you get that, just $15 to include state and fed.

I thought it was OK - but I agree with you, these programs 'hide' the info I want to see so I understand my tax situation. I'm sure 99% of their clients just want to enter numbers and get a refund and don't care about tax planning or understanding it. I'm half tempted to go through the paper forms in parallel, just to get a grip on it.

I was told TurboTax actually got better about this in 2006, but I probably will never use TT again, after the errors they had in their 2005 product.

-ERD50

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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 03-15-2007, 09:54 AM   #22
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Quote:
Originally Posted by ERD50
I'm half tempted to go through the paper forms in parallel, just to get a grip on it.
This is what I do. As an author of several software packages, I do not trust any software program. King of like the people who work at fast-food restaurants do not east at fast food restaurants.
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 03-15-2007, 05:47 PM   #23
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

I used to do my taxes by hand, but overall I'm very pleased with TaxAct because it does explain what a lot of the taxes are and the questions it asks help me understand what kinds of things are affecting my taxes.

I also do separate research into what deductions are available and what the tax brackets are... so if I need to donate a few more things to Goodwill or I can wait until after the year to donate them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ERD50
You could do the TaxAct online version for free, even efile the fed for free. What you do not get for the free version, is the ability to import that next year, and some of the tax 'help'. But, for just $8, you get that, just $15 to include state and fed.

I thought it was OK - but I agree with you, these programs 'hide' the info I want to see so I understand my tax situation. I'm sure 99% of their clients just want to enter numbers and get a refund and don't care about tax planning or understanding it. I'm half tempted to go through the paper forms in parallel, just to get a grip on it.

I was told TurboTax actually got better about this in 2006, but I probably will never use TT again, after the errors they had in their 2005 product.

-ERD50

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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 03-15-2007, 09:14 PM   #24
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Quote:
Originally Posted by ERD50
I'm half tempted to go through the paper forms in parallel, just to get a grip on it.
I did things on the paper forms first, then I used TurboTax online and eFiled. Why do I do the paper forms? I dunno! I quess I just trust me, more than I trust technology. Anyway, TT came up with identical figures as I did on paper....same as last year...the year before...etc.
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 04-09-2007, 01:06 AM   #25
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Does anyone import investment information for mutual funds or stocks info from Taxcut or TurboTax? Is it safe? The software asks for ID and passwords!
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 04-09-2007, 01:09 AM   #26
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spanky
Does anyone import investment information for mutual funds or stocks info from Taxcut or TurboTax? Is it safe? The software asks for ID and passwords!
Even if it's safe, I'm never confident that it's accurate.

So I enter data manually to exactly match the 1099s (what the IRS computers care about) and I don't have to worry abou the "safe" part.

TurboTax was already busted six or eight years ago for inadvertently programming a bug that saved account passwords. I don't think they have any credibility, although they gained a lot of experience the hard way...
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 04-09-2007, 02:02 AM   #27
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Nords,
Thanks for pointing out Intuit's mistake. I have changed my ID and password right after the import of investments. It appears that the data is correct (compared to the data or statement in PDF format).

Spanky
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 04-09-2007, 09:24 AM   #28
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Guess I'm a bit behind the times. What mistakes/errors did TT have last year, that were known. I downloaded the latestest patches around April 1 before filing, do that every year, 'cause it seems I'm always getting in late 1099s that cause me to have to redo the last little bit. Were there errors still present in TT after the April 1 download. Wouldn't they have to stand behind them, per their guarentee - not sure if that means they pay then penalty or not, if there is one.
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 04-09-2007, 10:43 AM   #29
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Quote:
Originally Posted by whitestick
Guess I'm a bit behind the times. What mistakes/errors did TT have last year, that were known. I downloaded the latestest patches around April 1 before filing, do that every year, 'cause it seems I'm always getting in late 1099s that cause me to have to redo the last little bit. Were there errors still present in TT after the April 1 download.
I can't tell the "IRS form updates" from the "bug fixes", and think Intuit likes it that way.

I didn't have any problems with Turbotax this year and the results looked fine (both for our fed & state tax returns, our kid's too). Usually if there's a significant problem then CNET and the tax websites are all over it.

When I exited the program and restarted it, earlier versions of TT used to pick up on the exact screen I left off. For some reason this year with our federal retun, TT would reset to the beginning and walk through a dozen verification & review screens before getting back to the exit point. If you didn't remember each response exactly the same as you had before (sometimes requiring research to remember what the heck you'd said before) then you'd be down a side road re-doing some data entry. After a couple times I left the program running for the rest of the week that it took to finish the return.

TT must have a heckuva time keeping up with the states. For two years in a row now it's essentially told me "We don't include form N334. You have to go find it, complete it, enter the result into our software, and include the form when you mail in your return. Since we don't include the form in our program then you can't e-file and we can't charge you $16 for it." Form N334 is Hawaii's tax credits for energy improvements like solar water heating, wind, & photovoltaics. Since Hawaii has the nation's largest per-capita solar water heating use, with as many as one-third of this year's filers filling out that form, you'd think TT would take a little time to blow the code to allow them to collect more e-filing fees. I can see getting surprised the first year, but after the second year?

Every year I enter a bunch of stock & fund transactions and when it's Schedule D time I swear that next year I'm going to do less trading. This year it finally happened...

Quote:
Originally Posted by whitestick
Wouldn't they have to stand behind them, per their guarentee - not sure if that means they pay then penalty or not, if there is one.
You would think so, but it'd probably be difficult to collect. I've never read anything about Turbotax filing errors or payouts, and they probably use confidentiality agreements to keep it quiet.
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 04-11-2007, 10:16 AM   #30
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Quote:
Originally Posted by whitestick
Guess I'm a bit behind the times. What mistakes/errors did TT have last year, that were known.

......

Wouldn't they have to stand behind them, per their guarentee - not sure if that means they pay then penalty or not, if there is one.
Well, I had a problem (2005) - TurboTax said I was not eligible to make a Roth contribution, even though I was. My frustration was, after spending hours trying to figure out what was going on (I was 99.9% sure I was eligible) I searched their forums (another few hours) and learned it was a *known* problem, with a *known* workaround. I don't know if they ever actually fixed it. But, since they didn't go out and actively tell people about the problem, it is likely that many people in my position just trusted TurboTax and assumed they were not eligible for a Roth contribution.

Now, the sticky part - there would be no 'penalty' from the IRS, and really nothing to indicate an error. The only impact was that some people may have lost an opportunity for a Roth contribution. There would be nothing to trigger a problem - their tax form would look exactly the same as someone who simply decided not to make a Roth contribution. They would not even be aware there was a problem, so would not even know to complain to Intuit about it.

So, in a case like this - their 'guarantee' is worthless. If you don't know you may have lost money, how can you complain?

My feeling was that if Intuit was aware of the problem (they were), they should have flagged it so that people could apply the workaround or wait for a fix. That left a really bad taste in my mouth, so I used TaxAct this year. It was OK, but at least I didn't throw more money at Intuit.

-ERD50

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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition
Old 04-12-2007, 07:28 AM   #31
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Re: Free TaxCut 2006 Basic Edition

Thank you so much, Wab ! I used this for the Federal forms and it worked perfectly !
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