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TurboTax Review – Is It the Best Online Tax Preparation Software?

By Brian Martucci

Reviewed by:
Rating:
4
On March 16, 2015
Last modified:March 17, 2015

turbotaxTurboTax is one of the most popular online tax preparation and filing software programs in the United States. I’ve personally used it to file my taxes for the past several years. Though I’ve shopped around for (and have reviewed) alternatives, I haven’t yet found a compelling reason to switch. And while I don’t personally qualify, TurboTax’s free filing package is one of the best free tax filing options around.

That’s not to say that TurboTax is perfect. Though its interview-based filing process is highly intuitive and the mobile-friendly platform is a snap to use, it’s a bit pricier than most competitors and requires people with complicated tax situations (myself included) to upgrade to more expensive plans – unlike some alternatives that offer most or all forms and schedules at lower price points. And though I’ve never gotten a bigger refund from another program (when I compared H&R Block and TurboTax a couple years back, my refund amounts were identical), TurboTax isn’t the fastest filing service I’ve ever used.

TurboTax competes with popular online tax filing software like H&R Block at Home, TaxACT, eSmart Tax, and TaxSlayer, as well as smaller, lesser-known platforms like Greanlight.

Plans, Pricing, and Features

TurboTax uses an interview-style tax preparation process, using your answers to a series of simple questions (such as “Do you have any children or dependents?”) to evaluate your tax situation and determine which forms and schedules you need to successfully complete your return. Depending on the complexity of your tax situation, TurboTax assigns you to one of five plans, each of which has a specific cost and feature suite. If TurboTax recognizes that your return requires a form or function that isn’t supported by your current plan (such as itemized deductions or self-employment income), it automatically prompts you to upgrade without losing the information you’ve already entered.

Federal Free Edition

This plan offers free federal tax returns and state returns for $27.99 each. Since it doesn’t support most schedules, including Schedules A (itemized deductions), B, C (self-employment income), D (capital gains income or losses), E (rental property income), H, and K, it’s only appropriate for simple tax situations.

Furthermore, it comes with an important drawback: Federal Free doesn’t let you transfer or import last year’s return or any information contained on it, regardless of whether you filed with TurboTax or another service.

  • W-2 Importing. The Free plan allows you to import as many W-2s as you need, and also allows you to record all W-2 income. This is particularly useful if you have more than one job.
  • Earned Income Tax Credit. If you’re eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit, the Federal Free edition lets you file Schedule EIC.
  • Affordable Care Act Forms. This edition also lets you file any forms related to the Affordable Care Act and can help you determine whether you qualify for subsidies to purchase health insurance under the Act.
  • Credit and Deduction Checks. As you fill out your return, TurboTax asks targeted questions (for instance, “Do you have a home office?”) that determine whether you qualify for particular tax credits and deductions. If you qualify for enough deductions, you’ll be notified that you should itemize your deductions, rather than take the standard deduction. However, the Federal Free edition doesn’t support itemized deductions, so you need to upgrade to a paid plan (Deluxe or better) to go this route.
  • Interactive User Help Functions. TurboTax’s AnswerXchange is an interactive forum where users can post questions on topics related to taxes, such as, “What is Form 1099-R?”, and questions about the TurboTax platform, such as, “How do I import my W-2?” Both users and TurboTax customer care employees can answer these questions, though TurboTax reserves the right to delete unhelpful or profane answers from users. A powerful search engine guides you through the massive amount of content to find relevant answers.

PLUS

TurboTax PLUS costs $29.99 for your federal return and $36.99 for each state return. PLUS isn’t advertised on the company’s main pricing and plans page – it’s only offered as an upgrade for people who begin filing with the Federal Free edition, and is suitable for the same tax situations covered by the free plan.

PLUS comes with all the features and functions of the Federal Free plan, plus:

  • Previous Year Transfer. If you filed with TurboTax last year, you can transfer the information on that return to your current year’s return. This automatically populates basic information, including your adjusted gross income (AGI) and home address.
  • Previous Year Importing. If you filed with another tax service last year, you can import your return (if saved in PDF format) into TurboTax and save the trouble of filling out basic information fields. TurboTax supports importing from all online and in-person tax filing services, as long as they allow you to download your return in PDF format.
  • 5% Federal Refund Bonus. If you opt to receive part or all of your federal refund (minimum: $100) as an Amazon gift card, TurboTax adds a 5% bonus to your total refund amount. So if you got a $1,000 federal refund and take the entire amount as a gift card, your total federal payout would be $1,050.

Deluxe

Deluxe is ideal for filers with more complex tax situations, such as those involving itemized deductions and some miscellaneous income (though not income that would incur self-employment tax). It costs $34.99 to file a federal return and $36.99 for each state return.

TurboTax Deluxe comes with all the features and functions found in lower-priced plans, plus:

  • Itemized Deductions. If it makes financial sense to itemize your deductions, a determination that TurboTax can help you make, you’ll need to file Schedule A. The Deluxe package offers all the support necessary to do so.
  • Support for Miscellaneous Income. If you earned miscellaneous income (indicated on Form 1099-MISC), TurboTax Deluxe allows you to log it in your return. You can log unlimited 1099s with the Deluxe plan. However, if you earned the bulk of your income as an independent contractor, consultant, or sole proprietor, you’ll likely be required to pay self-employment tax and file Schedule C, which is only supported by the Home & Business Plan.
  • Access to All Previous Tax Returns. Deluxe customers have access to all previous tax returns filed with TurboTax, as well as all user data tied to their TurboTax accounts.
  • Customer Support via Phone. Deluxe customers have on-demand phone access to TurboTax’s customer support team, reachable by calling (800) 414-5644. The call center’s hours run from 5am to 9pm Pacific throughout the year.

Premier

TurboTax Premier costs $54.99 for your federal return and $36.99 for each state return. It offers support for most common schedules, including B, D, and E, so it’s appropriate for filers with investment income, rental income, and other forms of non-wage income. However, since it doesn’t support Schedule C filings, it’s not appropriate for business owners and self-employed individuals.

This plan comes with all the features and functions found in lower-priced plans, plus:

  • Support for Schedule B. If you have more than $1,500 in ordinary dividend or interest income, you may need to file Schedule B. TurboTax Premier provides all necessary forms and support, including checks for relevant credits and deductions.
  • Support for Schedule D. TurboTax Premier can help you file Schedule D, which covers capital gains or losses from the sale of securities, real property, and other assets, and walk you through relevant credits and deductions. You can import transaction records from your brokerage – potentially saving lots of time over entering each transaction manually. TurboTax automatically calculates your cost basis for multi-part transactions as well.
  • Support for Schedule E. If you’ll be reporting income from rental properties or pass-through entities (such as S-corporations, trusts, estates, and certain types of partnerships), you need to file Schedule E. TurboTax Premier provides all necessary forms for doing so and can walk you through all appropriate credits and deductions.

Home & Business

TurboTax Home & Business costs $79.99 for your federal return and $36.99 for each state return. With full support for Schedule C and all related credits and deductions, it’s ideal for self-employed people, such as independent consultants and sole proprietors. TurboTax Home & Business comes with all the features and functions found in lower-priced plans, plus:

  • Support for Schedule C. If you’re an independent contractor, sole proprietor, or consultant, you may be liable for self-employment tax. If so, the IRS requires you to file Schedule C or Schedule C-EZ. TurboTax Home & Business provides full support for Schedule C and C-EZ filers, including guidance on all relevant credits and deductions. If you’re not sure whether you qualify as self-employed, check with the IRS.

Additional Features

Additional TurboTax features available across all packages include:

  • Mobile Apps. TurboTax has slick, user-friendly mobile apps for both Android and iOS devices. The apps have all the important features and functions of the main website, which is pretty mobile-friendly in its own right.
  • Pay Filing Fees With Your Refund. Regardless of which plan you use, TurboTax lets you pay your filing fees with your federal refund. This comes with a refund processing fee of $29.99 if you file before January 9th, and $34.99 after that date.
  • Real-Time Refund Display. TurboTax calculates your estimated federal and state refund in real time, visible in the upper left corner of the interface. As soon as you enter a new piece of information that affects your tax liability, this number changes to reflect it.
  • Automatic Information Transfer to State Returns. If you need to file a state return after completing your federal return, TurboTax automatically transfers all relevant information to the state forms. This cuts down on redundant, tedious entering of basic information on two different sets of forms.
  • Audit Support. This free feature is available to all TurboTax customers, regardless of plan. It includes a free phone consultation with a tax professional, during which you can ask open-ended questions about any IRS correspondence you’ve received. However, if you’re worried about actually being audited, TurboTax recommends purchasing Audit Defense, a more hands-on package, when you file.
  • Audit Defense. If you’re worried that your audit risk is elevated, you can purchase TurboTax’s optional Audit Defense package as an add-on to any plan before completing your return (you can’t buy it after the fact). Audit Defense costs $39.99, though TurboTax reserves the right to change the price at any time, and covers all state and federal returns in a given tax year. It includes access to a tax professional who reviews and interprets all IRS correspondence, schedules all audit-related appointments, and helps you gather any documents necessary to respond to your audit.
  • Military Discounts. Active-duty military members and reservists qualify for several different discounts with TurboTax. Servicemembers classified E1 (private trainee) through E5 (sergeants and petty officers) can file federal and state taxes for free using the Federal Free or Deluxe plans, or take $5 off federal filing costs under more expensive plans. Those ranked E6 (staff sergeant or petty officer first class) or higher can take $5 off federal filing costs under any plan.

turbotax free

Advantages

1. Customer Service and Knowledge Base (AnswerXchange) Is Extremely Comprehensive
TurboTax’s customer support system, anchored by the interactive AnswerXchange knowledge base and a phone support hotline, is impressively robust. I’ve never had a question that couldn’t be answered by searching through the AnswerXchange, and I’m usually the type of person who prefers a back-and-forth conversation. But the phone support component is great too, with short wait times (less than 10 minutes every time I’ve called, though I’ve never waited until crunch time to do my taxes).

By contrast, some competitors, including eSmart Tax, don’t have phone support at all.

2. Military Discounts Are Better Than Some Competitors
TurboTax offers discounts or completely free filing options to active-duty and reserve military members. All servicemembers qualify for at least a $5 discount off federal filing fees, and lower-ranked enlistees qualify for a free upgrade to TurboTax Deluxe (normally a $34.99 value). These deals are better than those offered by some competitors, including TaxACT, which doesn’t offer a free upgrade for lower-ranked enlistees.

3. Automatic Transaction Importing and Cost Basis Calculation
If you have a brokerage account, you can quickly and easily import a complete transaction record (up to a limit of 500 individual transactions, so probably not ideal for active day traders) for the previous tax year by selecting “Add Other Documents” from the Import Summary menu in your TurboTax interface. (You don’t need to download a PDF or any other file type – the importing is done automatically.) If you made lots of securities trades during the year or simply don’t like the tedious process of entering each transaction individually, this is a big help. Some competitors, including TaxSlayer, require you to enter transactions manually and separately – a potential time sink.

4. Great for Mobile Users
With a mobile-responsive website (bright colors, clean navigation, large-font text, and minimal clutter), as well as apps for iOS and Android, TurboTax is ideal for filers who prefer to use mobile devices. By contrast, competitors like eSmart Tax and FreeTaxUSA aren’t as mobile-friendly, with cluttered text and navigation systems that are difficult to navigate on a touchscreen.

5. Popup Menus Can Be Useful
I’m normally not a huge fan of popup windows. However, TurboTax’s sparing use of popup windows is actually helpful. For instance, early in the filing process, a window appeared, briefly explained that I could use the top toolbar to navigate to any point in my tax return at any time, and then disappeared with one click. This was useful because I had assumed that the toolbar was more of a status indicator and that I couldn’t use it to go back or forward in my return.

Disadvantages

1. More Expensive Than Most Competitors
Of all the major online tax filing programs, TurboTax’s sticker prices are the highest, ranging from $29.99 to $79.99. By contrast, comparable paid plans from H&R Block range from $24.99 to $44.99 (federal) without compromising on any features, forms, schedules, or support.

TaxSlayer’s paid plans are even cheaper, ranging from $12.95 to $34.95. And state filing fees at those competitors are comparable to or less than TurboTax’s, which range from $27.99 to $36.99.

2. Frustrating Website Errors
TurboTax seemed to have more website bugs this year. At several points, I got an error message or nonsensical request when attempting to enter my account dashboard or navigate to a previously completed page from the most recent page on my return.

Also, when I attempted to do something that wasn’t supported by my current TurboTax plan, the text on the upgrade prompt screen was replaced by plain HTML text reading “Bad Request” – a typical webpage loading error. I could still cycle through the upgrade prompts (separate pages outlining cost and confirming that I wanted to upgrade) by hitting “Continue” repeatedly, but couldn’t see any text or images on the pages.

3. Steep Processing Charge When You Pay Filing Fees with Your Federal Refund
If you opt to pay your TurboTax fees with your federal refund, the company charges a stiff processing fee of $34.99 ($29.99 for returns filed before January 9th). This is a hefty sum to pay for avoiding out-of-pocket filing fees. By contrast, TaxSlayer doesn’t charge any processing fees when you pay with your refund.

4. Refund Bonus Isn’t as Attractive as Some Competitors
Not every online tax filing service offers a refund bonus that can increase the size of your federal refund, so TurboTax’s 5% bonus for filers who take their refund as an Amazon gift card is definitely nice. However, this bonus isn’t as big or flexible as H&R Block’s, which offers bonuses of 5% to 10% (depending on the plan you select) and lets you choose gift cards from several dozen retailers, including Kohl’s and Best Buy.

5. Misleading Setup to the Free Filing Option for Returning Customers
When a returning customer (someone who filed with TurboTax the previous year) signs into their account for the first time in the current year, they’re immediately told that they can file their taxes for free. The next screen asks if they’d like to transfer information from the previous year’s return to their current-year return. If they agree, TurboTax shows what information has been transferred – AGI, address information, previous year’s refund/amount owed, address, employers, and lots of other data. It then says something to the effect of, “If you want to keep all this information and not start from scratch, sign up for the PLUS Plan,” which costs $29.99.

You have the option to select the Free plan here, but doing so wipes out already-stored information, lengthening the time it takes to file. While it’s understandable why TurboTax would want to push the PLUS plan before beginning your return in earnest, there’s probably a more straightforward way to do it.

6. Many Forms and Schedules Unavailable with the Free Plan
TurboTax’s Federal Free edition can only handle relatively straightforward tax situations. Since it doesn’t support Schedules A, C, D, E, H, or K, it’s not ideal for filers who wish to itemize deductions, pay self-employment tax, or report investment income or losses. If any of those situations apply to you, you need to upgrade to a paid plan. By contrast, competitors like TaxSlayer provide all forms and schedules at all price points, including the free version.

Final Word

The nice thing about reviewing tax software is that I get to try out a lot of different products and use the one I like best to actually file my taxes. However, most people don’t have the luxury of trying out multiple brands during tax season. No matter how smooth the filing process or straightforward the tax situation, there’s simply not enough time in the day.

That might partially explain why TurboTax remains so popular. For all its faults, it enjoys enviable brand recognition. In a competitive industry serving time-pressed customers, it’s easier to go with what you know than stray too far afield. That’s not to say that TurboTax doesn’t shine on the merits – just that, if you’re looking to go with what you know, it’s hard to beat TurboTax.

Verdict

TurboTax benefits from immediate name recognition and has a first-rate customer support infrastructure. Its website and interface is great-looking and boasts superior mobile functionality. Automatic transaction importing and cost basis calculations are great for more advanced tax situations too.

However, TurboTax is a bit pricey, suffers from frustrating website errors, and doesn’t offer the juiciest refund bonus around. And the misleading setup for free filing customers might give you pause.

Score

4.1 out of 5 stars: TurboTax is clean, mobile-friendly, offers great customer service, and has useful features for advanced tax situations (such as automatic transaction importing). However, frequent website errors, a steep processing charge for those paying with their refunds, and a bare-bones free plan limit TurboTax’s appeal.

Brian Martucci
Brian Martucci is a freelance journalist and branding consultant who loves to provide practical personal finance advice for regular people. When he’s not writing about frugal living, long-term investing, or consumer-friendly financial products, he’s probably out exploring a new trail or sampling a novel cuisine.

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  • Steve Thompson

    One more item for the disadvantages. And this is from my personal experience.

    I am a biz owner and software developer. I need a tax software product to do my tax returns. I tried TurboTax for Business only to find out that it absolutely has to be installed on the “C” drive of a Windows system. Intuit doesn’t tell you that in advance. They also don’t tell you that their system “phones home” and provides them with data you might not want given to third parties, which they “give” to third parties (check out the .rtf file on the CD). But it doesn’t do this if you are running a Mac!

    While most people may not understand why someone would build a system with a very small “C” drive, the fact is, I have been doing this for more than 10 years. And Intuit will not assist you in this matter. In fact, I know how to change the install to put TT where I want it. And the program is set up to recognize that it is not on the “C” drive and delete itself!

    Good software sometimes has warts that are show stoppers. And none of this is spelled out on the box when you buy it.

    • Karmella

      Oh wow – I didn’t know that. Thanks for the info, I am going to look into this.

  • http://madsaver.com Mac

    Excellent piece of tax software. I’ve done my taxes via TurboTax Online for several years and it just keeps on getting easier. At first I compared the refund amounts to other desktop software, but it’s always been accurate. No need to use anything else anymore.

  • http://wisefinish.com Wise Finish

    Great review. Just did a similar review on my site!

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  • http://madsaver.com Mac

    Just heard via Wisebread.com that TurboTax has a bug with regards to the property tax refund for MN residents: http://www.wisebread.com/warning-turbotax-missing-minnesota-tax-info. Good thing I have yet to file for that. Other than this, I’ve had a good experience with this tax product.

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  • http://hubpages.com/hub/turbo-tax-online Amalia Greenburg

    I also think Turbotax is a great piece of software. This year I had my taxes ready early but didnt push the send button until the last day.

  • http://express-tax-refund.com/ Holtz Bill

    I have been using TurboTax for 6 years and I love it. Great Review!

  • http://www.nwtaxpreparation.com/ NW

    Ive also been using turbo tax for about 4 years and it is a great place to use. I especially love the e-file option so you don’t have to wait in line at the post office and you can get your claim back Much faster. I’m a return customer. Though like the reviewer said if you have a complicated return you might want to get help from an actual tax preparation company.

  • Cau Nguyen

    I try to enter the property tax for my main residence in the easy step but turbo tax doesn’t allow me to. I have to enter the amount directly into schedule A. However, this amount has no effect on the tax refund. I believe this is a bug in turbo tax. I already sent comment to intuit and wait for answer. Anybody sees this problem?

    • ljf

      Yes! It doesn’t matter how much I enter for my property tax — the ‘federal tax owed’ just stays the same.
      This seems like a bug to me.

      • Cau Nguyen

        I figured it out. It is not a bug. I have AMT tax which disallows the reduction on property tax. Check line 45 on your 1040.

  • Ladyjay

    I’ve used Turbo tax in the past and have never had a problem. However, it takes one time for me to get scr—-.
    Now, my opinion is diferrent. Everybody is out for money. Turbo tax is a SCAM!! When you google “Free Edition” Turbo Tax, an option will come up for free filing is linked to Intuit.com. Once you click on this site, it automatically reroutes you to Turbotax.com. You’re under the impression that you are in the free edition web site. This happened to me when I went to file my son’s income tax. He was getting back less than $225.00, but I ended up paying $93.85 just to file for him. He worked part-time in another state, so they charged me for tow state filings. I called for a refund because I had not transmitted the return yet. I called the number listed 8004468848 and talked to a representative who told me why I had to pay the $19.99. In actuality, when you click on the “Free Edition” to file, you are rerouted to the edition where you HAVE to pay $19.99 just to USE the program and then you are charged an additional amount for the number of states you are filing for. Free-edition states that you don’t pay until you actually file. They had charged me before I even got a chance to save my information, let alone transmit it. Then they wanted to tell me that I had transmitted the return, when I knew that I had not. Rip-off city. Be aware!! I’ll go with Taxact next year.

    • David Bakke

      Ladyjay

      All I can say is “WOW”!!

      Sorry about your bad experience, but I appreciate the time you took to share with our readers.

      Thanks for commenting!

  • bray

    BEWARE: Turbo Tax 2010 can silently overwrite your previous year data. I cannot say whether this bug is incredibly sloppy programming or some twisted attempt to get users to feel they need on-line backup. But either way it is stupid. Before you install TT 2010, make sure to copy last year’s Turbo Tax directory if it’s just sitting in your $HOME/Turbo Tax directory. (Thankfully, I completed a back 15 min before installing POS TT and was able to easily restore the files).

  • http://ameriloansearch.com/ Collin

    Nice! I haven’t used TurboTax yet! But, I imagine that the Audit Risk indicator is a cool tool. I always am curious how “little”of a target I most likely am due to my low income as a graduate student. But, it’d be interesting to see it in black and white!

  • CJ McRAE

    Can I use the Turbo Tax Deluxe if I have rental property?? What does it cost to do a second State return??

  • Kira Botkin

    Hi CJ, if you have rental property, you are going to need the Premier edition as that’s a pretty tricky area. I looked on the site and I don’t see much about the state returns, so I would assume you would pay the same for the second state return as for the first state return. If you’re filing more than one federal return, I’d buy the version on CD because that includes unlimited federal returns and 5 federal e-filings. State is still extra there though.

  • Tim

    I think it was very misleading and shamefull showing the price of $39.95 and then charging my credit card $89.95. I will let this be known on every site I can possibly post to. I could have had someone else do them for that amount! I have always been a loyal customer and now you have lost a customer and as many people I can tell about my experience. Advertise as free and charge almost $90 is theft in my book.

  • Karmella

    Hi guys – I use the turbo tax premiere every year, and its always great until the part where you have to pay for state efiling ( if you want to) and it hangs up every year on me!
    For some reason I see the comments from last years turbo tax post – is that posdible? It was a hood reminder for me though!

  • Kirsten

    I use the free turbotax.com every year and couldn’t be happier. Never had a problem and it’s easy to use.

    Tweeted and liked on FB

  • Rise Isom

    I have used Turbotax for years, I like that I carries into forward from year to year and reminds you ol your last years numbers.

  • Tara Barry

    Super easy to use and kinda fun in a wierd way. It appeals to my sense of order.

  • Rrrrover

    This was a disaster. Repeated pop ups with no explanation or way around them. Could not be more disapointed.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_A7DJ2GBUMFYELZY4W5RRBJFTTA chris l

    Do not use Turbo tax they not paying out when they say they will. They already a day late on my girlfriends returns. and u cant get any response. Id hang out till they fix there banking problems. I heard H and R block having same issues. Ill find out Friday about H and R block and post.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_A7DJ2GBUMFYELZY4W5RRBJFTTA chris l

    Ok here is a update. Turbo tax gave us a date of jan. 25 for deposit. Come to find out that the irs isnt giving any money out till jan. 31. We completed our taxes on jan 17 and they were accepted. So now they are saying hope u get you money by feb. 5. Im telling ya something fishy is going on. I refuse to use turbo tax. Take my advise.

    • Kira Botkin

      Well, TurboTax is not responsible for what the IRS does, so I wouldn’t pin the blame on them, unless the IRS sent back the tax forms for being incorrect. They can only give estimates.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_A7DJ2GBUMFYELZY4W5RRBJFTTA chris l

        Well fact is turbo tax is responsible. They were using last years program. IRS has installed a new programs. So all they people who did there taxes early got red flagged and had to reprocess. Turbo tax will be taking the heat on this mess up. But nice try i guess u date someone who works for them.

        • Logic

          Dude, you clearly have absolutely no clue how the Treasury Department works.

  • Carter38

    Turbotax premier has been getting worse by the year, When it works it is great. I got the CD package about a month ago, and it has been working fine until today, now when I try to start it is it is one step short of the blue screen of death. I sent the trouble report in (probably 500 pages if you open each error),,,,OK so I wasted 50 bucks or maybe it was 60 with the CD. At this point it will take less time to print out the forms from ustreas.gov and fill then out by hand…I also have the same problem with 2010 so I’d have to reinstall that also plus re-enter everything so I can import into 2011. I can remember when the problems were always some simple MS Framework issue. Anyway, I think I’ll be going back to paper. Cheaper, quicker to generate, keep some IRS employee from playing FreeCell for an hour, never get much money back anyway if any. I think Symantic is releasing poorly tested software…their effort is going into the free S/W which is what most people will now be using JMHO. (Toshiba Satellite, Windows7 64bit SP1).

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_A7DJ2GBUMFYELZY4W5RRBJFTTA chris l

    Hello again seems they got there stuff straight finally. IRS sent out new date i guess the 31st will be the best we could do with our situation. Good luck to all.

  • YankeeLady7

    Obviously nobody has actually used Turbo Tax Home and Business 2011 for doing W-2 Forms and/or W-2 forms, or else Intuit paid you a lot of money to say great things about their software. I have used their software for years too, but 2011 is BAD BAD BAD. I’ve been calling them repeatedly since Saturday about submitting 1099’s and W-2 and their site has crashed from too many users trying to submit. And they are absolutely useless on helping. I’ve never been so disappointed and just don’t know what I’m going to do next year because I can promise you I am not doing this again next year. Now it appears the 1099’s actually made it to the IRS but so far nothing on the W-2’s. Turbo Tax’s solution is for me to call the IRS. Great. Another black hole.

  • Rick

    Have used Turbotax for the last 10 years or so. Very easy and quick. This year is the exception. After spendind several hours in a “chat” with no less than 4 people and a phone call from the
    “super tech” I was offered a refund. Problem is I am trying to install TT Home & Business 2011 on a Win 7 platform. Seems there is an install problem and as of Feb. 6th 2012 there is no fix.

    • Vgangwer1

      I too have had the same problem. I have been on phone 5 separate times, this last time listening to dead air for now 11 minutes while the “tech specialist” researches. They refuse to give me my money back. Think it is about time to call bank and put a stop payment on Master Card since MC does have insurance on these issues.

  • Agora

    Deceptive advertising. Paid for the $80+ “Premier” edition that “included” Fed and one state return. After entering both Fed and State data (laborious!) found that they would charge $20 to actually file the state return!
    That, and they didn’t even catch a missing Fed ID number!
    Interestingly, Intuit’s site claims a 4+ star rating, whereas independent sites end up with 2 to 3 stars from consumers.

  • Paull P.

    I have used Turbo Tax since 2005 without any issues… until 2011. My federal return has been rejected twice. This was AFTER Turbo Tax reviewed it and told me it was perfect. It turns out that the 2011 Turbo Tax federal form filler has a bug. The bug is causing the rejections. I’ve been waiting several days now for the bug fix. Turbo Tax is avoiding any talk about having a bug. It’s not on their web site anywhere. It’s frustrating!!!!!!

    • Ts

      TS – Dear Paul – I’m having the same issue. Schedule C is not being pulled into the file for submission during eFile or printing.. Major F’in bug. Rejected twice. No help yet from TurboTax!!!

  • Phil 46

    Business 2011 is a disaster. I’ve used Turbotax for years and this is a disgrace. As others are reporting the connectivity is a major problem, whether its registration, updates or efiling. I have finally given up and am mailing my return. Turbotax deserves to lose all its customers. I am fairly tech savvy and could not resolve the issue.

  • Common_Senser

    2011 Turbo Tax sucks. Schedule H has been buggy on it for years. This year is unbearable. Had to check a certain box even though their instruction says don’t check the box if CA (California), but if I don’t do that Turbotax says I have an error and does not allow e-file.

  • Johnclick311

    Dear Author,

    Where is your moral compass? Deceptive advertising is the first thing you should be addressing in an objective review of Turbo Tax.

  • Sheila

    I’m so frustrated! We have used TurboTax for years without issues, and, this year – we’ve been rejected 3 times. After waiting two hours for a “live chat”, I got no decent information, other than wait 2 days, and then attempt refiling. Try finding a phone number on their site – good luck! I’m going to wait, try again, and then submit through the IRS website. I will not be using TurboTax again.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rick.hambright.5 Rick Hambright

    I just received a letter from the IRS stating that none of my 1099’s were listed on my 2011 TurboTax and i owe. Owing doesn’t bother me – that TurboTax didn’t include what i entered does immensely ! My W-2’s were listed but with no $ amounts!! How can i have faith in Turbotax for this year??

  • Ty L

    I received a notice from the IRS that my 2012 1040 was incorrect in that I failed to declare income from an IRA and assessing me over $1900.00 in interest and penalties. On April 16, 2014 I filed a claim under the TurboTax Accuracy Guarantee as I had clearly checked the radio button stating I did not rollover the amount received. Per TurboTax instructions, I attached my return’s data file and waited for their reply. I received a reply on May 6, 2014 denying my claim stating I had not checked the rollover button and even included a screen shot of my return showing the button not checked. I looked at the return myself in my file and saw the button was checked. I emailed my own screen shot of the return and asked for an explanation. I heard nothing until June 3 when I emailed again asking for status. TurboTax refereed me to their screen shot and again denied the claim. I also noticed the screen shot from TurboTax was for the “Home and Business” software version. I used the “Deluxe” version and I also noticed the file names did not match. This was NOT my return. I quickly pointed this out and they again replied the version didn’t matter and they change the file names. They are denying a legitimate claim as their software was faulty. This situation is not unique to me and I hope there is a class action suit somewhere I can join. I have been a loyal TurboTax customer for over 25 years but that ends now.

  • Scott

    Turbo tax is a joke…. Was goin to use it until I learned that 1500$ was being stolen from. Filled out form but didn’t complete it bc it was only 2000$ compared to 3700$ last year. So I downloaded taxact and filled form out and it was 3650$. So I filed with them. Guess they didn’t make enough last year but I’m no fool. I hope people read this and experiment like I did and maybe these bastards won’t make any $ off our hard earned $! Suck it turbotax or intuit what ever name you clowns go by.

  • David moser

    Total RIP-OFF, Bought Deluxe like all years since 2008. Half way through program was forced to upgrade to Premier!! $69.00 for Deluxe and $89.00 MORE for Premier. Got me this year but NEVER AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Robert Kupina

    Higher prices no schedule D – I would way someone is going to be canned over this screw-up. Hello H&R Block

  • Hank

    This was my 5th year using Turbo Tax And my Last Had prob returning Deluxe version Had prob loading Premier Version spent Half a day with tech getting started no real help from calling support HR Block see u next year for sure

  • seobuzzim

    On a friend’s recommendation, I switched from H&R Block to TurboTax…paid a lot more because I own a small home business and Intuit has jacked up the prices the last 2 years for features that I guess they suppose you must make more money if you sell stocks or own a business. But thought I would get it back in time-savings because I can import my Quickbooks info for my business. Well, not!!!!!! TurboTax 2014 Home and Business version downloaded from Amazon Digital will NOT import my 2013 return from H&R Block. Tried the .t13 and the .pdf versions and tried multiple tax returns since I do my dad’s and son’s taxes. So…no time savings. I hope this is the last disappointment with this product…will be checking out other tax preparation software programs next year…for sure!

  • Bob Smith

    TurboTax is a scam! They completely gutted the Deluxe version this year, forcing people to upgrade to a more expensive version after getting half-way through the process. I’m not putting up with it, I returned my copy for a full refund (apparently a lot of other people have done the same thing), and am going to use the competition from now on. I just found out that TurboTax has been aggressively fighting any type of free, easy filing that the IRS might offer. Hopefully this fiasco will provide some support to a flat tax, or anything else that would put TurboTax out of business.

    • Brian Martucci

      It definitely pays to shop around, particularly if you qualify for the IRS’s free filing options – which we actually just wrote about on this site.

  • Guest

    yuif…. I started working from home, doing various simple jobs which only required desktop or laptop computer and internet access and I couldn’t be happier… It’s been six months since i started this and i made so far total of 36,000 dollars… Basicly i profit about 80 dollars every hour and work for 3 to 4 hours a day.And the best part about this job is that you can decide when to work yourself and for how long and you get a paycheck weekly.—> ????? < W­­­W­­­W­­­.­­­J­­­o­­­b­­­s400­­.­­­C­­­O­­­M??????????

  • Gary Brendle

    Brian, you as well as all the other reviewers have the top limit price for TT at $79, but when you go to their website, it is listed at $104 for their Home and Business, which I need. Am I missing something?

  • Philly Girl

    Gosh darn! One expects Turbo Tax to be up front about money matters! When you elect e-file, they charge you $35.00! But they don’t tell you that till the end! A “bluff-the-filer-game”. Bad move, TT!

  • PH Bell

    I’ve been a loyal TT user for 20+ years. This year I’ve encountered numerous errors with Premier edition (prior years lower cost Deluxe version is all I’ve needed). No help from TT after 6 weeks of asking. I’ve had to file an extension while I sort this out (might end up buying different software program). No more…next year TT won’t even be considered, even after 20+ straight years of use, this is too personal to me to put up with this.

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