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Doing Your Taxes on the Computer. Donald Burgard, CPA Smoker Smith & Associates PC Hershey, Pa. Why Use The Computer?. Accuracy of Math Calculations (?) Ease of Use (?) Reduce Complexity of the Tax Code (?) Simple (?) “it depends” – everyone’s situation is different. Math Accuracy

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doing your taxes on the computer

Doing Your Taxes on the Computer

Donald Burgard, CPA

Smoker Smith & Associates PC

Hershey, Pa

why use the computer
Why Use The Computer?
  • Accuracy of Math Calculations (?)
  • Ease of Use (?)
  • Reduce Complexity of the Tax Code (?)
  • Simple (?)
  • “it depends” – everyone’s situation is different
pro s and con s
Math Accuracy

Privacy

Tool to be used to reduce complexity

Quality of return is a function of software used answers to complexed questions

Lack of privacy

Hardware/software conflicts

Pro’s and Con’s
your options
Your Options
  • Canned Off the Shelf Software
  • Examples: Turbo Tax and Tax Cut
second option
Second Option
  • Online Web Based Processors
free option
Free Option
  • Free File by IRS
off the shelf software
Turbo Tax (Intuit) and Tax Cut (H&R Block) are the leaders

Quality of return is a function of your understanding of the questions

Both very good

Both try to sell other products and services

Pro – Privacy – data stays on your computer

Pro – Carry-forward data between years

Con – will need to download updates from earlier releases

Costs $19.95 for Basic to $69.95 for Premier

State filing costs more..up to $29.95 more

Off the Shelf Software
online web based processors
Online Web Based Processors
  • Turbo Tax Online http://www.turbotax.com
  • Tax Cut Online http://www.taxcut.com
  • Complete Tax – by CCH is very good http://www.completetax.com
  • Tax Net – x Turbo Tax employees http://www.taxnet.com/
  • Tax Act Online –great for simple returns http://www.taxactonline.com
online web based processors1
Online Web Based Processors
  • Pro – updated software – no need to download
  • Pro – got an internet connection – you got what you need
  • Con – Privacy – data is on their servers - overseas outsourcing issues
  • Pro/Con – speed – really need high speed internet connection
online web based processors2
Online Web Based Processors
  • Con – they try to sell you more products and services
  • Pro – costs – usually cheaper than canned off the shelf version
free option1
Free Option
  • IRS Free File site http://www.irs.gov/
  • Check out the qualifications – usually need AGI below $50,000
  • Complete Tax option is the best – AGI must be below $29,000
  • Free is not always Free!
pa state return options
Pa State Return Options
  • Pa.direct.file - www.revenue.state.pa.us
  • Very good option
  • Can also purchase state product of off the shelf software and online products
thanks
Thanks!
  • dburgard@smokersmith.com
  • 717-533-5154 x 123