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316 of 324 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars New to TaxCut, Pleased with it So Far
I switched from TurboTax to TaxCut this year primarily due to Intuit's new pricing structure where they both raised the base price quite a bit and then they charge $9.95 for each additional return you want to prepare beyond the first one. Given those changes, it was time to try something else.

So far I am very pleased with TaxCut. It imported my TurboTax data...
Published on December 1, 2008 by W. E. Damon

versus
110 of 121 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Switched from TurboTax and sorry I did
I bought TaxCut because at the time TurboTax had a stupid policy of charging an extra $10 for each printed tax return. They later reversed this, but I had already started preparing a year-end planning pro forma return using TaxCut. Now that I've used the product, it would have been better to stick with TurboTax even if I had to pay extra to print a planning return...
Published on January 15, 2009 by M in SC


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Beware - Not the same as last year, March 24, 2009
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
Last year TaxCut Premium Federal +State +e-file included the e-filing of the state return. This year they hit you up for an additional $19.95.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars work in progress, February 3, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
easier than Turbo tax, and much cheaper. If it continues to improve it will be a great product. Consumer reports rated this product higher than Turbo Tax.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good intro, but rush to push out leads to errors, January 31, 2009
By 
The "Cosmosviewer" (Alamogordo, NM United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
I purchased this product recently and found the introduction very good. It will ask you several basic questions to determine if you had 'life-events' that could possibly help you in filing your tax return (e.g. buying a house, moving, etc)

Unfortunately, after moving through the menus there were areas that were not updated or not available or the software was unable to pull the forms off the IRS website. For example, the child tax credit form was not available and stated it wasn't expected to be available for another month. However, at the IRS website, the form has been finalized for a long time. This problem of incorporating available software was, undoubtedly, a result of trying to be pushed out the door too quickly.

Additionally, very few of the state software/forms will be available for use until at least mid-Feb. So, while not a problem for the majority of fillers, it is a problem with those of us who tried to accomplish early.

Another problem is that forms that they do have frequently have problems if you want to change an entry. For example, when i entered the amount contributed to a Roth IRA incorrectly, it would not let me fix until I backed all the way out of the software and started over (for that section). Another software glitch.

Overall, the intent is good, but the rush to get it out of the door has apparently led to poor quality and not ready for the market.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A solid program to do taxes. Fine federal, weak state tax program, March 13, 2009
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
Back when I did my 2005 taxes, I swore I would never go back to TaxCut. I had a harrowing experience with the program including software bugs and crashes, inadequate interface, missing schedules, and a nightmare with deduction pro. To top it all off customer support was virtually non-existant. When I did get through they were unable to help me.

When I received a free copy of TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal in the mail with 'Free! We want you back" blazoned on the CD jacket, I was leary but then thought, 'what the heck. It's free, I'll try it.'

PROS:
1. Competent tax programt that has come a long way--now comparable with
TurboTax (in the past this was not the case)
2. Reasonable interface
3. Reasonably priced
4. Federal forms worked smoothly
5. INCREDIBLE customer support via webchat; BETTER than TurboTax
6. Much improved DeductionPro
7. Easy e-file

CONS:
1.I think TurboTax still has the edge...
2 Poor integration with state forms
3.So-so interview for state forms
4.Poor help files for state forms
5.DeductionPro not as easy to use for non-monetary donations/deductions as TurboTax's It'sDeductable
6.Key codes needed for e-filing weren't included in my version. They were easy to obtain from customer support, but this was an unnecessary annoyance.

So try it, I did and I was pleasantly surprised.I am comparing this to last year's experience with TurboTax, as I was satisfied with TaxCut and went with it. On the whole, the Federal tax experience is excellent, however, the state tax experience was less smooth. (See below)

Bear in mind that I do not have an overly difficult return to file. No major investments and not very complicated itemized deductions. I did move this year so I had two state forms to fill out and did sell and buy a house. Other than this, pretty simple and standard. I completed the taxes on an iMac, so this may be somewhat different than the Windows version.

THE INTERFACE: For starters, my TurboTax information from last year imported with out a hitch. The questions were simple and to the point. There are fewer fill-ins per screen than in last year's TaxCut. My guess is that it took a little longer than last year, but that may have had to do with the increased complexity of my taxes. One caveat here is that you have to answer the questions carefully, as missing one will result in missing one part of your tax. In comparison with TurboTax, TaxCut's interview questions are a little less clear. Double checking and knowing your finances does solve most problems, but care must be taken to make sure you don't miss a schedule or a life event. On the whole this was easy, but I'd give a slight edge to TurboTax here.

On the whole, the feature sets are similar between programs. I would have to say, that TurboTax is somewhat slicker. TurboTax allows you to download some W-2s electronically--I did not see that option in TaxCut. TurboTax has better integration between help files and the interview and also allows for easier navigation between sections on the tax forms. But TaxCut is no slouch and was adequate to the task.

DEDUCTION PRO: This is gobs better than TaxCut 2005. I like the fact that the program is installed on your computer, making it more responsive than the TurboTax equivalent. (It'sDeductable!, from TurboTax, is an online program.) It was easy to input various charities and non-monetary donations. DeductionPro has a 'calculator' for non-monetary donations, but once you calculate the value you have to manually input it into DeductionPro. The TurboTax version allows you to calculate the value and then directly inputs it into the spreadsheet--a much smoother operation. Unlike my past experience with DeductionPro, the deductions were quickly and easily imported into TaxCut. If you revise your deductions and reimport the file, TaxCut now has a failsafe to prevent you from deducting the same things twice. Much better than 2005. If you have a lot of non-monetary deductions, TurboTax would win the competition. If you have mostly monetary deductions, TaxCut's interface is better and, given that the program runs on your computer, there is no need for passwords and no time lags that can happen on web-based programs.

FINAL AUDIT: Both programs seem to have reasonable audit features and bring you to the area of the forms where there are questions or problems. No difference here.

E-FILING: There are 5 free e-files on TaxCut and the process went without a hitch. Both programs work well in this respect

CUSTOMER SUPPORT/PROBLEMS: I had to contact customer support 3 times with TaxCut. Each time, I used their webchat interface. My longest wait for an customer service rep was 10 minutes. Each time, the customer service rep was courteous, helpful, and solved my problem. This is MUCH MUCH BETTER than what occurred in 2005 when customer service was virtually non-existant and unable to help.

Problems included:
1. The need for a Key Code in order to e-file. Key codes were not included with my program (unclear why). I needed a keycode for both the federal form and the state forms. These were supplied by the customer service rep.
2. Inability to remove an inappropriate schedule from a state form. I was walked through this with a service rep
3. The CD I received did not have DeductionPro bundled with it. Customer service gave me a download link for the program. (This may be a glitch in the Apple/OSX version of the program)

Each time help came quickly and easily. TaxCut gets 5 stars for live 24 hour help. Last year's TurboTax help was okay, but nothing to write home about...

STATE FORMS: This is where TaxCut takes a bit of a dive. Based on my experience with the Federal forms, I bought and downloaded the state forms. All I needed were the key codes (as noted above) which were absent after the download. These weren't sent via email, but I knew about this when I requested the codes for the federal forms and received the key codes for the state at the same time.

The state forms are less well integrated with the federal forms than I remember from TurboTax. I never had to complete two forms with TurboTax. Suffice it to say, the NJ form was easier than the PA form (which is strange because PA is a flat percentage of your income). The state forms did not integrate with each other at all.

The PA and NJ forms did import information from the federal forms and W-2s, but did not take the information about my move from the beginning of the TaxCut interview. I had to input this information into the state forms and actually had to do this separately for each state as the state forms do not integrate with each other. The same was true for salary collected from one state while my primary residence was in the other. I had to input redundant information into the program. It's hard for me to compare this with TurboTax as I had only used TurboTax with a single state before.

The state forms did not have thorough interviews. Some information had to be typed directly into the forms themselves. Not specifically a problem, but in the tax software business, the interface is the most important thing.

Finally, the state help files were not as thorough. Especially for PA, I found myself downloading files from the PA state site in order to review instructions for filling out the tax forms--a major glitch in the TurboTax state forms.

One major problem: the PA form imported the sale of my home from the federal taxes. The problem is, sale of a primary residence is not taxable in PA unless some part of the home is used for commercial purposes (or a few other exceptions). After researching the instructions and downloading PDFs of the PA forms from PA state, I realized that this was the case. Needless to say, TaxCut calculated a massive underpayment and I was unable to delete scheudule D without consulting customer service. (As it turns out, I had to delete the schedule D 'worksheet' and then delete the forms. If you try to delete the forms themselves, nothing happens...)

SUMMARY: On the whole, I was pleasantly surprised with TaxCut. Would I use it again? I suppose I would. TaxCut was a bit more rough around the edges to use than TurboTax, but beat TurboTax hands down with their customer support. I would say that these programs are both good ways to do taxes.

On the whole, however, I was pleasantly surprised by TaxCut this year. Would I have used it if I hadn't received the federal form free? Probably not. But I will have to think about whether I will stick with TaxCut next year and the program was good enough to get me thinking.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars TaxCut vs. TurboTax Review -- used them both this year, March 8, 2009
By 
Mark Adler (Pasadena, CA United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
I used TurboTax Deluxe and TaxCut Premium in parallel on my Mac to do two tax returns, one with rental properties, a side business, and investments. I won't keep you in suspense: TurboTax is better. Given the recent Intuit shenanigans with TurboTax limitations and pricing, I really wanted to discover that TaxCut was better. Alas, that was not to be.

So what's better about TurboTax? The most significant for me is TurboTax's display of last-year and this-year amount columns in the wages and income summary (you get there with "select specific topics" and after you visit each topic), the deductions and credits summary, and in the rental common expenses interviews. They are the best way to see what I need to do, and what I might have forgotten. Like those home owner's association dues on one of my properties that I almost forgot. TaxCut does provide a two-year summary, as does TurboTax. However I don't find that very useful in either program since it's at a high level. Also TaxCut shows it as a form, which is an inconvenient way to look at it.

TaxCut also manages to be annoying in how it displays last year's imported data. There is a single column with blue numbers for last year. You might think that they would change color or something when you enter this year's data, but no. TaxCut doesn't even keep track of what I've entered, since it asks me if I replaced the old information, when that's what I just did. The display and questions are confusing and less than helpful.

The two columns in TurboTax, with "not visited" in the this-year column until I do something with it, as well as buttons that say Revisit if I've been there or Start if I haven't, is the right way to do it. (Though I wish TurboTax would display this year in black and last year in gray, instead of the other way around.)

Another nice thing in TurboTax is that I can have two returns open at the same time and work on them both. Not so with TaxCut. TurboTax enables much easier what-ifs between two returns, like who gets which dependents.

Again, TaxCut manages to be annoying even in opening the one return, since it doesn't remember was I was doing. TaxCut always comes up with the same window, making me pick work on an old return and click on it. The first time I came back, TaxCut didn't even know what directory I had saved the return in.

TurboTax comes up with the last return I was working on already open, with a button to continue where I left off. One flaw in TurboTax is that it doesn't remember that I had two returns open -- it only opens that last one I was messing with.

TurboTax always checks for updates when you launch it. TaxCut requires that you do that manually. TaxCut might let you know on an interview page if it happens to know that an update is forthcoming.

There were many times that TaxCut had a very short, arbitrary limit on the number of characters in a field, which prevented me from entering what I needed to identify what it was both for the IRS, and for myself next year. There may be field limits in TurboTax as well, but I never ran into them.

TaxCut also made it very difficult to look at the form relevant to what I am currently working on. In TurboTax I just hit the forms button in the upper right (and the little feetsies to get back), and I'm there. In TaxCut, I had to go find the form, if I even knew which form it was, and once there the display was cumbersome.

TurboTax also makes it easy to move between forms and worksheets by double-clicking on numbers that come from another form or worksheet. You end up at the source for that number. TaxCut instead asks you if you want to override the number from the unspecified different form.

I won't go into the myriad of little things, like TurboTax accepts 08 for 2008, where TaxCut requires you type 2008, or that TaxCut doesn't use the little red button in the corner and doesn't keep track of whether you've made any changes and need to save, but suffice it to say that in many ways TurboTax was much more pleasant to use.

Some things that are better in TaxCut: the Child EIC and tax credit rules are more clear in the interview process; the Next button mostly stayed in the same place making it easy to review, where in TurboTax the Continue button keeps moving around; TaxCut separates the deductions from the credits, which I like better than TurboTax which munges them together in one page; and of course the biggie, which is that TaxCut never bugs me about upgrading to the next version and sending them another $30 or $40 like TurboTax does *incessantly*.

But the few good things come nowhere near balancing the bad things about TaxCut. Unfortunately, I have to recommend TurboTax Deluxe over TaxCut Premium.

[This review can also be found under TurboTax Deluxe federal + state.]
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Going back to TurboTax, January 21, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
I used TaxCut for a number of years, always found it buggy, and eventually I switched to TurboTax. I was very happy with TurboTax, but this year, cheapness got the best of me (must be all the D-word being thrown around). Boy am I sorry. For one thing, I cannot import my financial data directly from my broker, which always gave me a bigger refund than when I entered it myself (something about variable cost basis, etc). That alone would have made up the price difference many times over. Now I finally have the state version and when I ran the error check, I got all sorts of errors where I am supposedly filing obscure forms and they aren't filled out correctly, and though I'm ready to file, I'll have to wait a few weeks for the next update. And it really makes me feel a bit insecure, like am I unknowingly claiming a credit for railroad benefits or hurricane assistance or adopting a blind child within the District of Columbia??!! Anyway, next year I'll definitely be back with TurboTax, and maybe even this year, we'll see how it goes...

Update, Sept 2009... I went to pay estimated taxes for next year with this software and what a nightmare!!! I ended up calculating the expected taxes with the software, then printed out blank vouchers and filled them in myself.
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26 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "BEST BUY" Recommendation, December 7, 2008
By 
RRR (Boston, MA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
I am a long time TurboTax customer but will recommend TaxCut this year. While TurboTax would win the "beauty" contest for it's look and appearence, TaxCut 2008 is more than adequate and calculated my taxes correctly and it imported my old TT files perfectly. At half the cost of TurboTax, I would recommend TAXCUT as the "BEST BUY".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Grab this One Here on Amazon !, March 13, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
First off, i started using this taxcut software last year after my family accountant raised his rates sky high. 200 dollars to file a short form? no thanks.. my friend suggested this to me so i thought id give it a shot.

was i ever glad i did! seamless interface, easy to use and fill out. plus i got my refund even faster than my "old accountant" could even estimate.

Bottom line i was wrong for dissing this software it gets the job done.

also id like to add. ive looked at this at several different places and they are charging outrageous prices for this..ive seen this same version at best buy,target, and walmart for 60.00 plus...its insane to pay that much for software that you will have to either update or even get again the following year.

save some cash and get it on amazon!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy as 1, 2, 3, February 15, 2009
By 
J. Miller (Bayonne, NJ United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
TaxCut Premium Federal and State program to do my taxes was easy as 1,2,3. IT was easy and I got my refund faster than doing it at Jackson He..... YOu know. I also got it faster than going to regular H & R block. I didn't like the fact that I had to pay an extra $20 for State Efile because you only get 5 FEDERAL Efiles and one paper State. But I saved so much money I will be using this next year as well. I don't see the need to pay $400 to someone else when I can go to Amazon get the software and do the same thing and get my refund even FASTER! Perfect. This was like TAXES FOR DUMMIES, trust that is what I needed. I printed it out and the program let me know every step of the way where I was at. IT let me know when the efile was sent to the IRS and when the IRS accepted it. PERFECT! I don't have a basic returns I have about 6 different forms to fill out. So you can do this yourself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Equal to Turbo Tax, February 15, 2009
By 
This review is from: H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] (CD-ROM)
I just finished my 2008 Tax Return. This was the first year using Tax Cut after 3 previous years of using Turbo Tax. I have a relatively simple return and let me say there is little difference in Tax Cut and Turbo Tax for me. I highly recommend you make the switch from TT to TC. I was able to get TC for the Amazon special for $29.99 and TC charged $19.95 to file my state. Buy H&R Block Tax Cut!!!
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H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION]
H&R Block TaxCut 2008 Premium Federal + State + e-file [OLD VERSION] by H&R Block (Mac OS X, Windows 2000 / Vista / XP)
$49.99 $6.48
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