Customer Reviews: H&R Block TaxCut 2007 Premium Federal + State [OLD VERSION]
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on December 30, 2007
TaxCut is well worth the price if you don't have a "simple return" (i.e. just income from one job, maybe a couple of bank accounts, no stock trading, capital gains, etc.) If you have a simple return, just download the fill-in PDF forms from the IRS and get after it. But if you have itemizing, income from more than just employment and a bank account or two, then this is worth the time you'll save. You can find everything you need to know in the IRS instructions and forms, but the $30-$40 will save you hours of time in looking it up, thru TaxCut's interview process.

A couple of notes, however:

a) I think that the state tax forms sort of stink -at least for Louisiana. Instead of outputting the same form that you get from the state (as TaxCut does for the Fed form), it prints out a summarized one, with all the data in one big block, no x-refs, etc. So you find manually checking it almost impossible.

b) The web-based tools that supposedly are one of the features of TaxCut have never worked for me when I needed them. Maybe if you wait until March or April to use them, but for those of us that file early, the stuff just hasn't worked. I rate the web-based and planning tools at a near zero

c) e-mail support hasn't impressed me. But then, for the filing of your taxes, you really shouldn't need it. The interview process and built-in help files are generally sufficient. Still, when I tried to use the web-based features, and they failed to work, I got some "canned" responses from the support group that obviously indicated that they 1- did not know what I was talking about, 2-they were using a standard set of FAQs that really didn't answer my questions/concerns, and 3-they really didn't care. However, as noted, if it works to start with, that's better than problems requiring support, regardless of how good/bad the support is.

d) MOST IMPORTANT- You MUST keep your software from year to year. DON'T discard the CD or dnload prior to 5 yr after filing. Reason- except for transferring your personal data as a prelude to entering current year data, you cannot open past year TaxCut tax return files (or at least thru 2006 tax yr) with the current software. So if you need to make an amended return, or if you're audited for say, a 3 yr old return, you'd better have a printed or PDF copy if you don't still have the sftware. I think that's pretty poor (not being able to open previous yr's tax return files), but maybe if enough of us complain, a change will occur. You can, however, output to a PDF and save that file for future ref. (You won't be able to amend with the PDF however.)

But, for under $40, the time saved for anything but a simple return, it's well worth it. (not to mention the saved time in doing "what-ifs" for various filing options.)
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on December 11, 2007
If you earn LESS than $54000 then I suggest you look into filing using Freefile, the link can be found on [...] I have not tried the service so I can't rate its ease of use but the software is free and you can e-file for free as well.

If you earn MORE than $54000 then I suggest using Taxcut over Turbotax. I have used both products and find that both are easy to use, but since Taxcut is much cheaper it's the better buy imo.

How much does e-file cost using the different products. I believe both Taxcut and Turbotax charge around $16-17 per e-file. Federal e-file is unique from state, so you will be paying around $35 if you choose to e-file for both.

I give Taxcut 5 stars for ease of use, but 1 star for charging us to e-file, averages out at 3 stars.
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on January 27, 2008
I like the program. But I got an install error this year under Vista:
Error: Vista Installation Error: Error 1320 'The specified path is too long. C:\Users\USERNAME\My Documents\TaxCut.'
This was because I had changed the default "My Documents" location and therefore the directory the TaxCut Install program was using didn't exist. Searching the TaxCut Support site, their recommended solution was to create a new USERNAME and install and run the program from there. The real solution was to temporarily change the "My Documents" location back to the default, install the program, and then put it back. This worked for me. I'd have posted this message at a TaxCut Vista Support forum, but there isn't one. And the offshore support agent I did an online Chat with didn't give me confidence that my information was going to go anywhere useful. I hope this helps someone.
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on January 14, 2008
There is a huge bug in TC that impacts PCs with multiple users. According to second-level support, the change that TC makes to the security settings for the "Program Files" folder is meant for the "TaxCut" folder INSIDE "Program Files". If you install TC, a second user may find that they cannot access any of the executables in "Program Files" as TC has set the security on that folder to essentially be private to the installer of the TC software. I found this only after my wife said she could not access her email software and I had to roll back the installation. I've made two calls to H&R Block, who tells me this is an "isolated incident." (not isolated for ME). I just tried the latest update via download and that did not fix it (H&R confirmed that they have yet to address this). The fix is not difficult. If they can set the security settings on "Program Files", they can "unset" them and do it right on another folder.

You can restore the settings by clicking on the "Security" tab in the properties setting for "Program Files." If you're not sure what to set the folder to, look at the settings before installing the SW or look at the settings on another PC.
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on December 1, 2007
Once again for the 3rd year in a row, H&R Block makes their easy and more affordable than Turbotax even easier to own with the premium edition, that is, Federal and State software all on 1 disc. Actually you download the State software from the Internet and update as need be throughout the season. As always though if you have to file in more than 1 state, you need to buy additional downloads or perhaps additional copies of the separate State CD. Also again, previous owners don't have to get their copy from here (Amazon) or other retailers if they don't want to as H&R Block has just started mailing out copies to previous users (I got mine yesterday). The kicker just to remind those of you who did not properly read my review last time, the copies that come by mail from Block ARE NOT FREE. You pay for them when you install the software. The bad news is you pay the list price, so for those of you who are hoping for a price break (Amazon's discount as I type this is only 6 bucks and Marketplace clients even lesser, assuming they are not trying to make a profit off copies they got from Block in the mail) then buy all means buy it retail, and save time. The good news about the Block copies, you pay ONLY the list price, no sales tax or shipping. The better news is once you pay with your favorite plastic (in a secured transaction), you get on screen and later in email a code number to save for your records as proof of purchase. This way, if at any time you have to uninstall and reinstall the disc, you don't have to pay twice. I believe Microsoft is starting to this with Turbo as well by the way for competition sake. Either way, whether you buy it retail or accept the copy in the mail from Block, you get a first rate program and save at least 30 bucks on the equivalent copy of Turbo. By the way, it appears the program no longer supports Windows Me or lower, guess it's time to buy new machines for those of us without an XP or Vista computer ;-)
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VINE VOICEon December 16, 2007
TaxCut offers individuals a powerful option for preparing an income tax return that is relatively easy to use. TaxCut assumes that you know little or nothing about income tax law. The software will ask a number of questions and will prompt you for information based on your answers. It will help tremendously if you gather as many of your tax documents as possible before starting. This software is significantly cheaper than paying a service to prepare it and much easier than doing in manually.

The e-file option has been around for some years and is a great time saver for those due a refund. If you owe money, you might want to save a few dollars and just file manually. The program will print all the forms you need so it's easy to do and there's no real advantage to electronically filing if you're writing a check.

Please note that this version covers both Federal and State returns. Most people will need both, but if you live in a state with no income tax then you'll want to look at H&R Block TaxCut 2007 Premium Federal (Win/Mac) for considerably less money.

If you don't itemize your deductions and have a very simple return, you might be better off preparing the forms manually on your own. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you have a return with major league complications, you might be better off going to a good CPA. For everyone else, this is really a no-brainer. It's inexpensive, easy to use, and accurate. I've been using TaxCut for quite a few years and would not even consider giving it up.
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on January 26, 2008
I generally like TaxCut and have used it before, but ... The TaxCut Federal + State has an error. When I try to download the one state return which is included in the $34.99 price ... I'm prompted to provide my credit card information and pay *another* $29.99. I contacted customer service and was told that they didn't have an answer and would get back to me in two business days ... which they haven't done. So now I have a program that doesn't work, unless I pay twice. Anyone have a similar problem?
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on January 21, 2008
I started off using TaxCut 5 or 6 years ago. When I started, it was around $20, and they gave you rebates for the state version and e-file, so $20 was pretty much all it took to get your taxes done for the year.
Last year's MSRP on the TaxCut Federal+State edition was $29.99 I managed to get it for $25 after shipping.
A year later, and they've increased the price from (essentially)$30 to $40. That's a 25% increase in 1 year! And you still have to pay to e-file on top of that.
I wonder what the justification is for the increase?

I'm sure the software will work just fine, but geez, once they've got you hooked......
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on February 2, 2008
Using TaxCut for past 10 years. This year they want $40 for the CD they mailed me USPS, plus "for only $30 more" they'll "allow" me to e-file. What a crock.

e-filing is why I buy the software. The IRS has links to 15 sites that will do it for free.

$40 a year including e-filing is worth it.

$70 a year to "allow" me to e-file isn't. Run Away!!!

Next year it will be $50 for the program, $20 if I want a CD in the mail, $30 to e-file to IRS, $30 to e-file to state, and $20 to be able to save my return. Bait and Switch B.S.H&R Block TaxCut 2007 Premium Federal + State (Win/Mac)
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on February 24, 2008
I used TaxCut last year, and was moderately happy with its ease of use and performance. It had trouble with a K-1, though, forcing me to manually adjust my return. All in all, it was okay, though.

This year, I bought it again (at a price $10 higher than last year), only to find that the CD in the package was blank. After calling the customer service number, I was told to mail the CD back to them for a refund or replacement. "Can't you send me a replacement now, so I don't have to wait three weeks or so to start my taxes again?" "No."

Oh, and by the way, H&R Block will not refund any taxes you paid either (or postage, of course), so basically I'm out three bucks because of their poor quality control.

The silver lining is that all of this led me to try TaxAct, which is cheaper (free for the federal filing, $14 for state), and actually BETTER! It handled my K-1 flawlessly, and I like TaxAct's user interface better!

Keep the three bucks H&R, I won't be back.
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