Preparing federal income tax returns is a given for nearly all Americans. But for a significant proportion of taxpayers, state income tax returns also come into play. While many taxpayers outsource their tax returns to professional or commercial tax return preparers, another sizable proportion does not. For DIY tax filers who must file both federal and state returns, TaxACT Ultimate represents one of the best options available.
What Does TaxACT Ultimate Do?
TaxACT provides integrated desktop software and online tax preparation and filing services for federal and state income taxes. The online version of TaxACT ultimate provides step-by-step guidance through an individual federal income tax return for wage earners and self employed individuals. Desktop TaxACT software, available as an online download or on a CD, provides fillable tax returns and related forms for individual wage earners and self employed individuals. Both versions allow one free federal income tax return filed electronically or printed out and mailed.
What Are the Charges and Payment Options for TaxACT Ultimate?
The online version of TaxACT Ultimate costs $17.99, payable upon filing the first tax return. The desktop version of TaxACT Ultimate costs $21.99 to complete and file one federal tax return, with an option to file up to four additional federal returns for a total cost of $28.99. If e-filing for additional federal returns are not included with the original order, e-filing additional returns costs $9.99 each. E-filing state returns also costs $9.99 for each return. For software CDs and downloads, payment can be made by credit or debit card, or by paper check or money order. Checks by phone are not accepted. Online programs and payment of taxes electronic filing can be paid by credit or debit card or by deduction from anticipated returns of at least $100.
What Services Does TaxACT Ultimate Provide?
The desktop and online versions of TaxACT Deluxe include unlimited free telephone and email support for the entire tax year. Users can also seamlessly import information from federal tax returns into state tax returns. The desktop version of TaxACT Ultimate also allows unlimited preparation and printing of paper federal tax returns for spouses, offspring or other individual taxpayers.
Mobile versions of several TaxACT apps are available for Android and iOS devices, including TaxACT Express, Tax Return Status, Donation Assistant and the TaxACT App for tablets. TaxACT Ultimate customers also have access to TaxACT DocVault, an app for Android and iOS devices to securely store tax returns and related document, and access returns prepared with TaxAct for the previous two tax years.
How Reliable Is TaxACT Ultimate?
As an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau since 2001, TaxACT has an A+ rating. The BBB based its ratings in part on 120 closed complaints against TaxACT in the previous three years, with 35 BBB complaints closed in the previous 12 months. TaxACT has also been named to the Bizrate Circle of Excellence, based on high ratings for consumer reviews, every year for the past six years. While these stats are no guarantee of reliability, they are undoubtedly impressive.
Does TaxACT Ultimate Have In-House Expertise?
TaxACT software and online tax filing services are designed by in-house programmers, certified public accountants and tax accountants. Content designed by TaxACT experts available to all users includes TaxTutor guidance with information on recent tax law changes and Life Event Tips to assist with tax implications for circumstances such as moving or changes in marital status. TaxACT Ultimate customers may also receive unlimited assistance either by telephone or email from TaxACT's own tax specialists.
Does TaxACT Ultimate Have a Money-Back Guarantee?
If taxpayers are assessed with a penalty by the IRS due to a calculation error caused by TaxACT software or online tax preparation program, TaxACT will pay the penalty and interest. In addition, dissatisfied customers can request a no questions asked refund within 30 days. Customers must still pay any actual additional taxes owed, along with shipping and handling charges for returned software.
Does TaxACT Ultimate Offer Tax Preparation Services?
TaxACT does not provide tax preparation services. Nor will TaxACT provide representatives for taxpayers who are audited. This is one of the major differences between TaxACT and full-fledged tax preparation services.
For taxpayers seeking a one-stop solution for e-filing both federal and state income tax returns, TaxACT Ultimate is an excellent choice. Both the desktop and online versions offer abundant guidance to help do-it-yourselfers navigate their tax returns. But taxpayers with more complex returns will probably want to obtain the services of a commercial preparer, or a tax professional such as an accountant or tax attorney.