Filing your taxes is never a fun thing to do, but it’s something that has to be done every year. You can take your tax information to a CPA but unless your situation is overly complicated, you may be paying too much for their expert advice.
Then again, DIYing your taxes may feel a bit overwhelming and leave you with a feeling of being unsure. With so many options available, how do you know which ones make the most sense for your family and finances?
Here are three free online tax filing options that have been tested and approved as the best for 2015.
1. FreeFile From the IRS
One of the top free options for filing your taxes comes directly from the IRS. They offer FreeFile, which allows any individuals or families, to digitally file their taxes using approved software or fillable forms.
The approved tax filing software list (that will import your tax information) includes:
- TurboTax’s free version
- H&R Block’s free file
- Jackson Hewitt’s service
- TaxACT free file
- and others
In order to access the free version you’ll need to click on the links via the IRS website, and meet the adjusted gross income requirement of making less than $60,000 annually.
This is only available for individuals, couples, and families. You can not use the FreeFile service if you’re a business or other entity.
Stand out feature: your taxes will be filed accurately and securely via IRS approved software, all for free. You can check your return’s progress and find out when your refund will be deposited.
2. H&R Block’s Software
Depending on your financial situation, you can choose to file your taxes with H&R Block using one of their four different software options. Or you can also visit one of their nearby locations and sit down with a tax professional in person.
If you’re a first-time tax filer, or have a very simple tax situation, you can use the free version. After that they offer three other options from their Basic program, which costs $19.99, up to their premium version, for $49.99 and is best for investors and self-employed business owners.
None of these options include prices for your state’s filing fee since each state is different and will be calculated separately. These prices only apply to federal tax filing. You can download the software directly to your home computer, or purchase the program online or in stores.
Stand out feature: in the event you’re ever audited, H&R Block offers in-person support (usually from an Enrolled Agent) to guide you through the process.
3. Intuit’s TurboTax
Likely one of the favorites on many best online tax filing option lists is Intuit’s TurboTax. This tax filing program comes from the makers of QuickBooks, Quicken, and Mint so it easily integrates with these programs. You can simply and easily export your yearly income and expenses transactions into your TurboTax program.
The software is by far some of the easiest to use and comes with a maximum refund guarantee. Additionally, no matter what kind of software you end up choosing (from their basic to home & business options) you can start your return for free. You only pay, based on the service you choose, once you’re ready to file.
Stand out feature: easily transport your personal or business finances from Intuit’s line of finance software, into your chosen program for the most accurate tax filing.
Free Tax Calculator
Before deciding on the best software for your tax filing needs, check out this simple and free tax estimator to get a quick snapshot of what the final figures will look like. See how much your refund will be, or how much you’ll owe, so you know what to expect.
Then simply choose the best free (or paid) software from the options mentioned above. Happy tax season!