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Apps To Help Make Filing Taxes Easier For Self-Filers In The Upcoming Year

It is never too early to start getting information organized and prepared for filing your taxes.

It is never too early to start getting information organized and prepared for filing your taxes.

Though potentially painful and burdensome, that reality is approaching as the deadline for filing federal income tax returns is April 15, 2024.

Taxpayers must be mindful of that date and file their returns by then to evade penalties and interest on unpaid taxes.

There are scores of software products on the market to help make filing taxes easier, and there are some fundamental tips self-filers may do well to consider online and mobile apps to help make the process potentially easier.

Observers declare it’s crucial for self-filers to identify each tax deduction and credit they can possibly gain. For instance, some tax apps purportedly offer an option that digitally adds data to forms automatically and offers live assistance to expedite the process. Others can supposedly help you secure an advance refund, while others might even provide monitoring for expenses and mileage.

According to the Internal Revenue Service, the average taxpayer spends 13 hours to complete a return. While that can make the process burdensome, some tax-prep software could make filing returns for federal and state taxes less difficult. The encouraging news is that many Americans can qualify to file for free, particularly if they have a basic 1040 Form that includes a W-2. Based on the Wall Street Journal, some of them are included here.

Another option, IRS Free File, enables taxpayers to prepare and file federal income tax returns online if they qualify.

When it comes to the marketplace, it is another story. Considering key factors such as costs, accessibility, functionality, and whether the service is free or comes with a price, Black Enterprise did some research to spot some tax apps or software in various categories for possible users to consider to help simplify filing in the upcoming tax season. Check out some options here:

Getting overall help

Turbo Tax by Intuit or TaxAct Express:

Widely known and with high brand recognition, Turbo Tax reportedly provides services for numerous filers who need help, people who like doing taxes themselves, and individuals seeking support from a tax expert who can help on many fronts. A purported pitfall is all your fees are not made clear until you finish the process. Another hurdle is Turbo Tax has no physical sites, meaning it might not be a great option if you’re looking for personalized service.

TaxAct Express scores high largely because of its supposedly moderate pricing. It also reportedly allows the most robust free option among providers and lets you pay for tax filing with your tax refund. The downside includes no expense tracking, and there is a charge for state filing, even with the free service.

Tapping into free tax software

Cash App Taxes

This app offers a quick, easy, and entirely free way to help you file both federal and state taxes, according to Vice. The website states, “No hidden fees, no matter your tax situation. Plus, we include free audit defense with every return.”

Some of the reported cons of the app are Cash App Taxes do not work for some tax situations, no expert is offered, and the financial service platform must be downloaded to use the service.


Accessing personalized support

H&R Block

This tax preparer offers several options for people who prefer to do their own taxes and seek face-to-face expert advice. Users can gain access to many choices, ranging from downloading software to a home computer to filling your return through the web or mobile app. It has a large network of offices across the country, helping simplify the process of getting help from a live pro if filing the return becomes too difficult. A downside is the package can be costly unless you qualify for the free option.

Using an app for business tax purposes

QuickBooks Online

This app can help various types of businesses and independent contractors gain help after starting up and growing. For instance, its website claims it can help users “get every tax deduction to help calculate, file, and pay your payroll taxes for you.” Some cons may include a learning curve to getting started, which can be costly compared to other providers.