10 Helpful Apps For Tax Season12:45 PM EST Wed. Mar. 06, 2013
Tax season is right around the corner and e-filing has never been easier. Combine e-filing with one of these apps and you'll be ready for this tax season and beyond. Besides e-filing, some of these apps will help you to stay organized and prepared for the next dreaded tax season. So read on to find out which apps could ultimately manage your money and provide the lowest tax liability.
When it comes to filing taxes, "convenient" isn't a word that comes readily to mind. However, H&R Block Tax Central for Android and iOS lets a user conveniently file a 1040EZ federal and state tax return right from a mobile device. Developed by tax services provider H&R Block Tax Group, this app makes filing taxes easy. Once opened, a set of questions determines whether a user qualifies for filing a 1040EZ and then, without having to retype personal information, a filled-out W-2 can be automatically imported or a picture of the W-2 taken with a smartphone's camera can be imported instead. The data is then automatically reviewed for errors/omissions. H&R Block Tax Central also offers free audit support from an enrolled agent. While it is free to download, it costs $9.99 to file and an additional $4.99 to use Smart Import.
The IRS is committed to helping taxpayers access the information they need. Developed by the Internal Revenue Service, IRS2Go is a free Android and iOS app that checks the status of a taxpayer's tax refund or payment. By simply entering a Social Security number, filing status and the expected refund amount, a taxpayer will be able to check on his or her filing status. With IRS2Go, a tax return or account transcript (to be mailed within a few business days) can be requested. A user also can keep up to date with the latest IRS news, sign up for tax tip emails to help prepare for tax season, and contact the IRS with questions.
With TurboTax SnapTax for Android and iOS, tax filing can be more quick and less painless. Created by tax-preparation software developer Intuit, this app uses the snap of a camera to enter W-2 data effortlessly and instantaneously. After answering a couple of personal questions, the app reviews the imported information. Once that is completed, federal and state taxes are ready to be filed. This app supports not only W-2 income, but interest income (1099-INT), unemployment income (1099-G) and student loan interest (1098-E) as well. A user also can report and receive tax breaks for dependent child care and calculate earned income tax credit. This app also provides a detailed FAQ to address concerns and offers support from professionals via live chat or via the phone. This app is free to download but the in-app purchase to file state and federal taxes costs $24.99.
For those curious about how much they'll be getting back on their tax returns, this tax calculating app helps to make that assessment. Another app developed by Intuit , TaxCaster for Android, iOS and Windows doesn't file taxes. Instead, this app estimates how much can be received back on a tax return. To calculate, this approximating app requires the input of personal information such as income, federal and state taxes withheld from the previous year, deductions, credits and payment information.
Keeping up to date with expenses may mean deductions and paying less taxes. Tax Tracker - Expense and Trip Logger is an iOS app that may help a user save thousands of dollars. Built by independent developer Jarrod Dumble of Tiny Mind Apps, this iOS app keeps track of receipts and assists in organizing daily expenses. By simply snapping a picture, this app keeps a record of all transactions. Deductions can be added, tracked and organized by category. Notes also can be created for certain expenses as well as for keeping a log of vehicle mileage. To make it easier, all of this information can be sent to a user's accountant. When it comes to preparing for tax season, this app keeps your expenses in the palm of your hand.
These days, it's hard to keep up with the constant changing of tax rules. However, this is one great reference app for keeping up to date on current U.S. tax rates. Developed by Bloomberg BNA, a source of legal, regulatory and business information for professionals, BNA's Quick Tax Reference for Android, BlackBerry, and iOS is a great source for quick access to U.S. tax rates and filling in income tax details. This app includes the current tax rates, corporate and individual tax rates and income tax rates for estates. Tax information from years as far back as 2007 can be accessed as well.
During tax season, it's important to make sure that a recently filed income tax return has been accepted by the IRS. MyTaxRefund for Android and iOS easily tracks the status of a filed tax return. Developed by Intuit, this free app tracks both federal and state tax returns. To find out when a tax return is accepted by the IRS, a user enters marital status, Social Security number and the refund amount. This app can be used with or without a TurboTax account/product.
There are certain qualifications when it comes to receiving earned income tax credit, and now there is an app to help determine that. Developed by Intuit, EITC Finder calculates how much tax credit a taxpayer may be able to claim. This free app for Android and iOS is designed for nonprofits and lower- and middle-income taxpayers.
TaxACT Deluxe Tablet App for the iPad allows a user to work on his or her tax return wherever and whenever. Developed by tax preparation software service 2nd Story Software, this app makes filing taxes a breeze and includes step-by-step guidance for those having difficulty. Once filled out, the answers are conveniently placed onto the correct form. If certain information is missed or unavailable at the moment, a bookmark can be created as a reminder to go back later and fill it out. When completed, TaxACT Deluxe examines for mistakes and blanks. The app costs $9.95; however, there is an additional charge of $8 for a state return, which includes e-filing.
When it comes to making certain purchases, it's best to think about your budget. With Mint.com Personal Finance, this free app for Android and iOS takes a glance at a user's personal balance and transactions. Another app developed by Intuit, Mint.com manages, organizes and categorizes spending habits. This app also aids in creating a budget, keeping track and sticking to it. Once signed up, many different accounts (bank, credit cards, investment accounts) can be linked to the password-protected app. Mint.com categorizes each transaction according to its category and geo-tags where money was spent. What's great about this app is that alerts for late fees, bill reminders, over budget and large purchases are sent either by email or directly to a device.