Customer Reviews

200
3.6 out of 5 stars
TurboTax Premier Federal + State + Federal efile 2009
Platform: PC/Mac DiscFormat: BoxChange
Price:$34.00 + Free shipping with Amazon Prime
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113 of 120 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2010
I have always used turbotax but this year but they changed their pricing. The package says one free state download. True, you can download one state of your choice. However, you only get to prepare one state only. All additional state preparations are at $39 via download of even the same state. Thus for example, you have two family members living in California. The first person downloads the free California state download. If the second family member, who also needs to file the California state return, the second family member needs to pay $39 to turbotax via the software, to prepare the second state return, again, even if it is the same state. Contacted turbotax and it took several tries until they stated that this is the case. The first few times they would not confirm it but rather dodge the question and give an ambiguous answer, not admitting to the change.

1/16/10 update: after installing an online software update yesterday, it seems that turbotax has now changed their policy/software back to the way it was in previous years (probably due to the numerous complaints that they have received). Now, as with last year's edition, you can do more than one state preparation for the same state, for the one free state that you have download. I have now given it 4 stars instead of the previous 1 star, with 4 stars becuase turbotax, as stated above, tried to previously limit the one free download to also mean one state prep (which is not the case now). Other than the previous frustration regarding the state download problem, turbotax has always given me great results. Great advice/info when you tag the help function. The help function will guide you for whatever is currently on the screen, thus you do not have to hunt for the information.

2/17/10 update
I have still been hearing that some people cannot do more than one state prep for the free included one state download. I have downgraded the star ratings from a 4 previously to a 2 now because the state download/prep problem still exists for some people. If the problem is fixed, I will upgrade the star rating then.

Don't know if it is real but "Bob Meighan, VP of turbotax" wrote to one of my comments on the deluxe version stating that:

****************************
Bob Meighan says:
Anthony... TurboTax does not charge extra for preparing multiple state returns for the same state. There was no change in our pricing policy this year. I believe if you received a different story from one of our agents, I suspect it was because they probably thought you were referring to TurboTax Online, where you are charged for each return.

Bob Meighan
VP, TurboTax
****************************

Again I don't know if Bob is for real. If so, I would kindly ask Bob if he could change the turbotax website to state officially, for once and for all, that a buyer of the desktop version shall have unlimited state preps for the same free included state download.

I have also heard from another buyer that turbotax said this was due to a software flaw and should be fixed by Feb 25. We shall see. In the meantime, even though I can do multiple returns on the same state, many others cannot, thus buyer beware.

2/28/10 update:
The problem seems to be fixed. I am upgrading the ratings from 2 stars to 4 now, after it seems to be finally working now. I have received a comment stating that now it is possible to prepare more than one same state return from the free one included state download. Please let us know if it IS or IS NOT working for you.
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84 of 89 people found the following review helpful
on January 8, 2010
In addition to the well documented price increases, in-your-face suggestive sales pitches throughout the program, and proprietary tax file format which doesn't work with other programs, you may add 'install problems'. Just received my TY '09 Turbotax Premier and it took two hours to install. Got a 'Microsoft .NET 3.5 SP 1 error' right out of the gate. Tried it on another computer with the same results. Check the Intuit website- apparently this is a known problem because the site directs you to verify installed MS .NET installations and then remove the corrupted items. Let me save you some time. Uninstall MS.Net thru Add/Remove program then use the removal tool from the Intuit website, restart, then reinstall MS .NET and install Turbotax. Wish I'd have known this earlier. Two hours in and just starting my taxes...
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56 of 61 people found the following review helpful
on December 27, 2009
I have used Turbo Tax since its inception and it does it all. Not too pricey and has saved me a lot of money in H&R Block fees, CPA fees, any other tax preparation method and it does a better job. Much more reliable than "overnight" "once a year" tax preparers. It is also under my control. It has an audit checker and provides all the forms necessary with efiling which takes about two weeks to get your refund. It has direct deposit. User friendly. Interactive. It has it all. They have been doing this for quite some time now and are very proficient at it. I would NOT recommend using the on-line - get the disc. Why because you have a full backup - Turbo only keeps partial filing and forms of your yearly taxes.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2010
I've used Turbotax for at least 15 years. I've tried others, but Turbotax was always better - better suggestions and more accurate and complete calculations.

I prepare may taxes in December (using data from Quicken) and then update it as the final numbers comes in from my financial institutions after the first of the year.

This year however, Turbotax has so far refused to let me do my state taxes. Yes, I have the e-mail saying that my state (Illinois) was ready and I could download and work on it. Turbotax tells me I have a free state and identifies that state as Illinois. When I click on "start" for the state, it takes me on-line and asks for money.

I've visited the Turbotax forums and this appears to be a common problem reported by many. No solution has been offered, but one post by Intuit suggested sending them a note if having problems with the state, which I've done. So far no reply or fix from Intuit.

The Federal side seems fine and I suppose I can do my state manually. However, I've paid for a state and I think it would be reasonable if I could use it.

If you are not an early user of tax software, such as I am, you may want to wait for Intuit to work out their problems before sending them money.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on January 29, 2010
My fiance and I have used Turbo tax for the last two years. My mother has used Turbo Tax for as long as I can remember. I have never had a problem before, but this was bad.

Cliffs Notes Version: We had success when we uninstalled .NET 3.5 and let Turbo Tax install it for us from the CD.

1) We tried to initially install the program and got an error for .NET 3.5 sp1. It suggested that we "repair" the .NET install through the Add/Remove Programs Control Panel. Tried this. Failed to install program.
2) We found a few suggestions for uninstalling .NET and then reinstalling from Microsoft (Windows Update took care of this). Attempted to install Turbo Tax. Failed to install program.
3) Found a few suggestions or a program created by Intuit (TurboTaxUtility.exe) which was supposed to fix problems. Tried this. Failed to install program.
4) Finally, we uninstalled .NET 3.5 and then ran the Turbo Tax installation (from the CD). The Turbo Tax CD has a version of .NET 3.5 to install if your computer doesn't already have this. The Turbo Tax CD installed .NET in an acceptable manner and Turbo Tax installed net.

Personally, I'm uncomfortable with this. To me, this says that the .NET version installed by Turbo Tax is not the most recent, but the only acceptable version. If Microsoft wasn't content with the version and felt the need to correct something, there's probably a reason. Once I'm done with my taxes, I'm reinstalling the Microsoft version of .NET.

Once it got installed, we've encountered no problems. Hopefully nothing comes up to change that.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on February 26, 2010
I purchased the Turbo Tax Premier on-line software. After several of the built in accuracy checks, the indication was that I was finished. So, I saved it all to my computer and paid the bill via credit card. Well low and behold, there was a ridiculous error on my Schedule D, capital gains, which made a huge difference in AGI. I have no idea how the numbers were created because it wasn't even close to what I input. And, I was not able to go back and get it corrected (didn't recognize my log in, etc.)so I ended up not using the return I paid for. I will never use Turbo Tax again and would not recommend it to anyone, especially if you have a fairly complicated return. To make matters even more questionable, Turbo Tax sent an email telling me to "finish" my return, after it was finished mind you and I am not able to access the material anymore.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon January 10, 2010
This review is for TurboTax 2009 Deluxe for Federal Returns. Fortunately I live in Texas and there is no state income tax so I don't have to worry about the state portion.

TurboTax has had its share of issues but I came back to it because it does seem to be the best there is, but I'm knocking off a star because of the history of issues I've had with the program in previous years (like it not calculating tax correctly until I deleted some assets and then re-entered them). However, I was a little shocked to read that it requires 500MB of HD space PLUS up to 620MB more if Microsoft .NET 3.5 SP1 is not installed (Mac is only 255MB). Wow! That could be over 1GB to do taxes. How inefficient we have become!

I just installed TurboTax Fed Deluxe on a Vista x64 system (it's Jan 7th, 2010) and didn't have any problems. In fact, it installed very quickly considering that it claims it needs 500MB (but I do have an SSD drive that greatly speeds things up). TurboTax immediately found 4 updates and asked me if I wanted to update. The updates seemed to have installed just fine. "Uninstall or change a programs" says TurboTax 2009 is using 343MB. It says TurboTax 2008 (from last year and still on my computer) is "only" 162MB, so a BIG increase (but I wonder how accurate are these figures?). In any case, even 1GB of space is not a big requirement nowadays.

I will be working with this to help estimate my 2009 taxes before I pay may Jan 15th estimated tax payment.

NOTE: Deluxe will do a Schedule C just fine, but it may not provide as much help as the Home & Business version. If you have been doing taxes yourself for awhile then you might not need to pay the extra money for the additional help. The same with other editions, TurboTax encourages "overbuying" just to get "extra guidance", the "audit meter", and/or "It's Deductible". All forms are included with all the editions.

I will update this review as I continue to use the product.

Pros:
* All editions include all forms
* Works on 64-bit versions of Windows XP and higher (of course that includes Vista and Windows 7)
* On Jan 8th, I used it to help compute an estimate of the tax I will owe for 2009 to help determine what to pay for my last 2009 estimated tax payment and the program did not crash.
* I had a "flawless" install and update on Vista 64-bit - didn't ask for any serial or reg code
* Probably the best tax program there is
* Price includes federal E-File
* Deluxe version can do a Schedule C for the self-employed - but it doesn't provide as much guidance as the Home & Business edition

Cons:
* Not perfect (but how can US taxes ever be perfect)?
* Annoying "smart" input entries that try to format things like dates while you're still entering them
* Confusing handling of SEP contributions
* Have encountered bugs in previous years that caused me to have to delete and re-enter assets
* Might take up to 1.12GB of HD space on Windows according to the system requirements
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2010
Installation and update were trouble free. Selecting "Start a New Return" allows me to get as far as trying to import last year's return. Unfortunately at that point, the program opens six windows that state it is "Checking for Solution..." and freezes, and has to be killed off. It has been like this for two weeks. Similar complaints have been posted for other versions. I have just discovered that alternately, if I select "New Tax Return" from the "File" menu, the program is only too happy to transfer and then edit the data from last year's return. Unfortunately, it then crashes when I move on and try to import my W-2.... Out of curiosity I have uninstalled and reinstalled it numerous times, experimenting with different brands of security programs installed, and even with no security program installed. I'm running under XP Pro, so we're certainly not talking an obscure environment. I was a satisfied user of TurboTax for the previous 11 years, but so far this year's version has been a complete waste of my time.

Saturday, January 30th:

Baseball season is approaching, and that results in my using Photoshop a lot, so I installed drivers from my video card manufacturer, Nvidia, since they tend to provide better performance with Photoshop than the drivers Microsoft provides with XP. Now, amazingly, TurboTax seems to be working. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! We'll see if this lasts....
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on December 19, 2009
I have used TurboTax for more than five years now. I have always been a Mac User so I cannot comment on the PC Version. I have never had a return rejected and I used the Premier product because I have investments and business income and expenses. The product runs very fast and flawlessly on my Mac, I run Snow Leopard now, never crashed. A few years I to amend a return and I lost the 2005 software. I downloaded the version from their web site and in thirty minutes my return was amended and filed. Not every software product is perfect but this is as close to perfect as your get.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on February 27, 2010
I've used Turbo Tax for about 8 years, 3 years on my present computer...and have been quite pleased with it...until now!

I started entering data for Turbo Tax Premier CD version(which for me includes a large number of entries for a rental unit.
At the end of the Federal Section all appeared OK. I started the State portion, indicating my state.
The immediate next thing that came up was "Finished with State". I hadn't entered anything! My state has lots of credits and charges that alter the Federal figures, but I hadn't been asked about any. The "Start State" box had changed to "Edit State" so I clicked on that to go through the interview. NADA. The program stopped there.
After some frustration I found I could print out the state forms, but the bottom line tax owed didn't look correct.

I held my breath, saved my files removed the program and reinstalled the Turbo Tax CD. Full data entry...same problem.

So I called Turbo Tax help. After a hold of 66 minutes, I spoke with a very pleasant agent. She had me try several things, including typing in code! After 80 minutes with her my phone went dead. The battery died from all the hold and call time.

Next day I received a nice e-mail from Turbo Tax expressing regret the phone call wasn't completed because they had the DEFINITE fix. First, I was to go to a specific URL then follow some of that info and proceed with other instructions they gave me. The URL was dead - not a valid address. I followed the rest of the instructions and re-entered the data - a third time - nothing happened, still hanging up at state.

Being a glutton for punishment I started an online chat with a Turbo Tax agent. He explained that Turbo Tax was buggie due to a very quick update to accommodate the new Windows 7 operating system. He also said the online version was more up to date than the CD. (Of course I let Turbo Tax install updates to the CD program before starting.) After 90 minutes the agent gave up and kindly gave me a code for a free download.

So, I abandoned the CD version, uninstalling it and proceeded online - entering the data a forth time.
The program hung up in the middle of the Federal data entry. I QUIT.

No more calls or chats. Nothing worked. That's why I say NEVERMORE TURBO TAX. I purchased a competitor's program and easily completed both Federal and State forms (of course after my fifth data entry)!
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