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Tax help? - The art of Thornwolf — LiveJournal
Tax help?
So I started doing my taxes on Turbotax.com and I did the basic (apparently the free version isn't available anymore?) and that's $14.95 or something.

I also have to file taxes for 2 states since I moved. Its $24 bucks to file PER STATE. Considering I'd only be getting like...4 bucks from Ohio alone, that doesn't seem like a fair deal.

The cost to have TurboTax do my taxes is almost as much as my federal return! Is there a better way to do my taxes? I have all the info filled out on TurboTax I just haven't hit the "submit" button because then I'd have to pay their ridiculous prices. I'm seriously really bad at this sort of thing. I've always done it through Turbotax before so I've never done it through mail and don't even know how, but at this point it seems like it would be cheaper.

I don't want to pay nearly 100 bucks just for a computer to do it for me.

Help! D:
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altonwings From: altonwings Date: March 6th, 2007 05:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
We have used http://www.freetaxusa.com/ for the last five years--it's an excellent website, and it's relatively inexpensive. But for a federal return so low, you may have to resort to doing it by hand to see any money back at all.
thornwolf From: thornwolf Date: March 6th, 2007 05:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
ive never done it by hand, thats the thing...

will you um...could you explain it to me? D:

*Is a 21st Century Digital Girl*
darkwolfie From: darkwolfie Date: March 6th, 2007 05:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
If they charge you to file electronically, then maybe you can use TurboTax to get the forms and print them out...then send those in or just transpose the numbers to the correct boxes.
thornwolf From: thornwolf Date: March 6th, 2007 05:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hrm that might be an option.
altonwings From: altonwings Date: March 6th, 2007 05:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
Let me be honest:

I'm a smart man, a very intelligent human being. I barely trust my own tax work done by hand, let alone set someone up to fail long-distance with what I 'think' was done right. Personally, I'd just pay whatever it costs online and not stress about what I'd get back. Seeing that it isn't a huge sum of money, you're basically doing the taxes to make sure Uncle Sam (and the state of Ohio) don't make you their bitch for the next several years.

It's worth the cost of an online service to do the work for you. Even if you have to pay a little, it's just easier all the 'way around. My take on it, at least.
thornwolf From: thornwolf Date: March 6th, 2007 05:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes but I'm paying 74 bucks to have them do it for me. Basically I'm giving them back my return.

altonwings From: altonwings Date: March 6th, 2007 05:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
Having filed a tax return with a tiny, insubstantial $.22 cent error once... it beats an audit. My $.22 cent error translated to a fine of $212.48. Plus, of course, the original $.22 cents.

You can sweat it out over paper or just pay the money and let the computers do the work. Put another way: Is it worth your time to do it by hand? Is it worth the stress and calculating all the little sections by yourself?
thornwolf From: thornwolf Date: March 6th, 2007 05:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
touche. i didnt know they would fine you like that, i thought they would just ask for that money back, not pile on a whole bunch after it. But yanno..its the government. Even the bible says to not be surprised by what the government does. Methinks I should take that advice ;P
(Deleted comment)
altonwings From: altonwings Date: March 6th, 2007 07:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, it gets better. A couple years ago the North Carolina IRS sent me a letter saying I owed $4500 because I never had state taxes taken out. I, of course, contacted my workplace--because every checkstub had money showing out for state taxes and I will be damned if I'm paying for their mismanagement.

Turns out it was a state error, they sent me $2 and change back at the end. The end came 8 months afterwards. Ooh, be thankful those LJ entries were closed--the frigging LOOPS I had to go through just to prove I wasn't a criminal.
hartssong From: hartssong Date: March 6th, 2007 05:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
I do mine on TaxAct.com Not a bad website and inexpensive. Turbotax is always way too freaking expensive compared to others.
azusis From: azusis Date: March 6th, 2007 06:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
H&R Block did my Federal for free, and then I did my State by hand. I thin kthey charge $20 for state, each. o.o;
westly_roanoke From: westly_roanoke Date: March 6th, 2007 06:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Doing taxes by hand isn't hard. Just take your W2s, make sure you read all the sections, make sure you read all the 'if's' and then send it in!

I've never done mine with any kind of software, and only did it once when my mom insisted I have it done by a pro. (Otherwise when I was 18 and up I've been doing them myself/Cro's been doing them.)
thornwolf From: thornwolf Date: March 6th, 2007 06:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
can i do my state ones with my w2's though? Do i mail in the w2 i got? i dont know how to do it. Thats the thing that gets me. Do i have to get another form to fill out?
westly_roanoke From: westly_roanoke Date: March 6th, 2007 07:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, you should be able to. They give you three copies, one for State one for Federal and one for personal records.

So, yeah you wanna attach one of the copies to your state.
(Deleted comment)
thornwolf From: thornwolf Date: March 6th, 2007 06:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
where do you get those forms? Sorry for asking seemingly stupid questions. like i said though I've never done it through anything but turbo tax.
crashcoyote From: crashcoyote Date: March 6th, 2007 07:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
Try at the local public library. That's where I get mine
starcharmer From: starcharmer Date: March 6th, 2007 07:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
One of the people on my friends list used taxslayer.com this year and said it worked awesome. She got her return back and all.
nambroth From: nambroth Date: March 6th, 2007 07:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ordinarily I just do things by hand, but I had to use turbotax this year because my taxes were so damn complicated (Thanks windstone) and I had worked in 2 different states. I just used turbotax to do everything, and instead of submitting electronically, I just printed out the whole mess and mailed it in. Saved me a good bit, since I owed a lot anyway.
trippystate From: trippystate Date: March 6th, 2007 11:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
whoa whoa whoa gal!
i did my taxes here: http://www.hrblock.com/taxes/partner/index.jsp?otpPartnerId=180
i know it's free to file your federal and there is a small fee for the state, but not much at all.
It was really easy and you can set it up to directly deposit the return in your bank account.
all you need to have with you is your W2
taleron From: taleron Date: March 7th, 2007 01:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
I just finished filing my taxes on TurboTax.com as well. Didn't pay a cent.

The secret to e-file is that the IRS website has special links for free-filing that some of the companies try to hide on their own website. TurboTax calls theirs the "Freedom Edition". Here's the link from the IRS website:


Just click and find the one you want. TurboTax's is a little bit down the page, but here's a link to their "Freedom Project," which has a whole different website. Sneaky!


As for state taxes, check the state's own IRS website, I think every state has their own online free filing. I live in Illinois and filed my state taxes on the IL IRS site, didn't cost me a dime. Only thing is that it takes a little while longer since you have to fill out all your income information again, instead of letting the company who did your federal "import" your information to your state.
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