Tax Time Ripoffs!!!

Discussion in 'General Community Discussions' started by DXSMac, Dec 6, 2007.

  1. DXSMac

    DXSMac
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    I hate doing taxes with software, because you are dependent on hoping that the programmers wrote the code correctly. If they didn't you could be messed up.

    I prefer doing mine the old fashioned way, just fill out the forms myself. This way, I know how the form is supposed to work.

    I just LOVE testing out tax software.

    Right now, I'm playing with: TurboTax (purchased)
    TaxActOnline (web based)
    TurboTaxFree (web based)

    Just for kicks, I made up a simple scenario of someone who earns $20-$30 thousand, has a kid, no spouse, attended college and paid some student loan interest. Of course, this person will get earned income credit and child tax credit.

    Using the EXACT same scenario, guess what folks, I don't get the same refund between the three places.

    TurboTax Purchased Software = $6509 refund
    TaxActOnline = $6809 refund
    TurboTax Free = $5032 refund

    I have noticed some interesting things.

    1) TurboTax software did not calculate an education credit even though I put an amount in for college expenses and did the "yes, they were in their first two years, were not convicted of drug offenses (the software actually has to ask you this year), and at least half time." I think this is because TurboTax calculated and applied the Child Tax credit FIRST, which wiped out all the Federal Tax owed, and once your tax liability is ZERO, you can't get an Education credit. I do NOT agree with how TurboTax did this. TaxAct, on the other hand, calculated Education credit first (which zero'd out the tax owed), then did the Child Tax credit. The Child Tax Credit is refundable past the "zero" amount, whereas, the Education credit is not. In my opinion, this is acceptable, but check with your favorite tax professional.

    2) TurboTax software and TaxActOnline each calculated a different "stimulus credit." Turbo Tax software used a special form to calculate the credit (and came up with $900 for this make believe person), TaxAct Online just "Filled it in" (and filled in $600 for the make believe person) I don't know which one is correct without going over the form with a fine tooth comb. I believe $900 is correct for this situation, assuming the make believe person did NOT get a stimulus payment during 2008. (If you got one, you get a smaller credit.)

    3) I cannot figure out what TurboTaxFree did, as they won't let you "view" your return unless you create the User ID, which I don't want to do.

    Software is usually updated during January, so it's best to wait until February to file using software, to make sure all the "updates" are in the software.

    So, if you are using tax software, or any of the "free" filing sites, all I can say is..... GOOD LUCK! You are on your own! Might want to have a buddy who is good in taxes look over your form to make sure the software did it correctly.

    JJ

    LATER: In the purchased TurboTax software, I went back in and wiped out the "child" and then the software "allowed" the Education Credit. Then I went back in and entered the child, and the software gave both credits (Education and Child Tax). However, the average person should NOT have to do this! I fired off a question on this on the TurboTax web site.

    JJ
     
  2. abbygolden

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    QUOTE(Lindsay Richards @ Jan 8 2009, 01:23 AM) [snapback]14778[/snapback]

    Doing your own taxes is a quick way to divorce.



    I'm not sure what you mean by this but I'm thinking it is a little tongue in cheek.

    Now that I'm retired, I do my own taxes by using the HR Block online software. Since I have no state income tax, it is really cheap and easy. No problems using it for me.
     
  3. Lee and Fran

    Lee and Fran
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    I do my taxes via the irs site, for free, I efile, dont pay a thing for it. I am happy and will be happier when my check is deposited in the bank next week or so.
     
  4. gsbogart

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    We have used Tax Act, a free program for the last several years. No complaints.
     
  5. Butch

    Butch
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    Just a thought... if you are a senator or congressman, in our federal government, you don't have to pay some of your taxes due... at least not until you get caught... Makes one wonder how many others are also guilty of one in the same?????
     
  6. DXSMac

    DXSMac
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    QUOTE(Butch @ Feb 5 2009, 03:38 PM) [snapback]15064[/snapback]

    Just a thought... if you are a senator or congressman, in our federal government, you don't have to pay some of your taxes due... at least not until you get caught... Makes one wonder how many others are also guilty of one in the same?????



    And IRS workers are really scrutinized. If you make one itsy bitsy mistake on your OWN taxes, even if it's minor, it's almost (depends on who you pi**ed off...) grounds for firing!

    During the time I was a Fed, I heard that morale at the IRS was horrible.

    JJ
     
  7. amareto

    amareto
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    TurboTax software and TaxActOnline each calculated a different "stimulus credit." Turbo Tax software used a special form to calculate the credit (and came up with $900 for this make believe person), TaxAct Online just "Filled it in" (and filled in $600 for the make believe person)
     
  8. NYDutch

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    This thread is from 2009 and any information presented may no longer be valid...
     
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  9. BankShot

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    HI Dutch - This happens all the time with new members who don't realize that the thread they are responding to is sometimes many years old. They just don't see that "little fine print" down at the bottom left hand side of the post that tells when the post, or thread, was done, etc. Perhaps a notice can be posted as a "Sticky" by an Admin that alerts new members to be aware of this? Just a suggestion that one of the Admins may pick up on and follow thru with................:) As members we can continue to try and let new members know about this but it would be nice to see it handled at the Admin level. Hey Admins, do you be seeing this post perhaps? Hope you and your family are well and safe..................

    Terry................(aka BankShot)
     
    #29 BankShot, Jun 30, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2020
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  10. BankShot

    BankShot
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    Hey amareto - - - Did you by chance read the two posts right before yours? This thread, as Dutch and I tried to let you know, is 13 years old and those involved with it back then may not even be active members anymore. When responding to a post on the forum, take notice of the date in small print at the bottom left hand corner of that post. Doesn't mean you can't post a reply but it will at least let you know how old it is before responding. Just trying to be helpful here and not critical. Welcome aboard the forum, travel safe and stay healthy...................

    Regards, BankShot.............(aka Terry)
     
    #30 BankShot, Jul 2, 2020 at 7:40 AM
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2020 at 8:16 AM
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  11. BankShot

    BankShot
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    Not to beat a "dead horse" here but I couldn't help but notice a post, that was between my two above posts, has been "eliminated" by an Admin as it was evident that the poster was paying no attention to the "assistance" he was being given about responding to a thread and posts that were over a decade old. As the old saying goes, "A horse can be led to water, but it cannot be forced to drink". Some folks are just like horses I guess. No offense intended here, let the horses trot along where they choose to...............:rolleyes:

    Happy Pandemic Traveling Everyone, BankShot.............(aka Terry)
     
  12. docj

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    The post was removed because it contained a "live link" to another website, not because it was attached to an outdated thread. It was clearly spam intended to direct traffic to a particular site.
     
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  13. BankShot

    BankShot
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    ------------------------------------------------------------
    Thanks for the heads up on this one Joel. I kinda-sorta was suspecting that it was a spam post but gave it the possibility that it wasn't even tho it did contain a live link. Still would be a good idea IMHO if somehow that "Sticky" I mentioned in my initial post might alert new members to look at the posted date at the bottom left corner of the OP's original post and also the last followup responding post. Hope you are well and healthy. We are very anxious to get outta here at the end of the month for a couple of weeks of some ocean air..................

    Happy 4th, Terry................(aka BankShot)
     
  14. Texasrvers

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    Your idea about the sticky post is a good one and certainly could be helpful, but if new reviewers are not noticing the date of the post they are replying to, I wonder how many would see and/or actually take time to read a post in a completely different thread. But I can't see how it would hurt anything to provide a post that calls one's attention to noticing the post dates. I'll ask about getting this done.
     
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