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February 28, 2011


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I had major issues with H&R Block online this year. I converted a traditional IRA to a Roth and it kept telling me I overfunded my Roth for the year.

I ended up chatting with support on the website and both web sessions had their windows mysteriously close halfway through.

So then I called support and the first person I talked to was essentially 'web support' and couldn't really do anything about the website. I called a second time and the lady was very nice, but informed me that they had to run a 'system update' a week later and to try again after that.

At that point I polled my facebook friends to see what they all used. An overwhelming majority said TaxAct, but a few said TurboTax.

As a Vanguard customer, I noticed I get a 25% discount for using TurboTax, so I gave them a shot first as I thought TaxAct looked a little basic.

I was pleased with TurboTax, they were able to handle my conversion, and I think they did a great job.

Normally I'd have nice things to say about H&R Block, but this year I was very frustrated with them. They did try, responding to my Twitter posts (similar to the way Comcast handles their twitter account) but at the end of the day I couldn't get my issue resolved quickly, so I switched.

Mark, with regards to your comment about TaxAct, I just wanted to weigh in. I've been using them for about 6 years now to file my returns. My taxes are rather complicated due to real estate and rental properties, and I have always been impressed with the site. They let you either walk through major topics sequentially, or jump to a section and enter data directly into a form. As with H&R Block, they have a running total of refund or amount due. They also have relevant, related tax information shown alongside each topic that changes as you move through. I rarely have to check out the IRS website, and usually I find that the whole document was available on TaxAct, I just didn't look far enough. As for fees, the last couple years I have paid $17.95 which includes Fed and 1 state filing. It has been worth the price for the ease I've been able to do it.

I'll probably give TaxAct a shot next year. A ton of people recommended it so it's worth a shot.

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