File your 2013 federal and state taxes right from your iPhone or iPad with these great apps!
It's tax time the United States and Canada and for a lot of people, that means... refund checks! If you're looking for the fastest way to get your money back, there are lots of iPhone and iPad apps that can help you figure out what you're getting back and in some cases, even help you file your taxes for you instantly. But which ones are the very best?
TaxACT and TaxACT Express
TaxACT is available for both iPhone and iPad and lets you file simple federal turns for no fee. This typically means you're filing a 1040EZ form, not itemizing any deductions, and only have a couple W-2 forms. For that, you'll pay nothing. If you have a more advanced federal return you can pay $9.99 as an in-app purchase to file it. You can also choose to file your state return with TaxACT at the same time for $14.99. For less than $30 your taxes are done and taken care of. You then access your return and its status from iPhone, iPad, or online.
For anyone looking to file quickly and easily, the TaxACT suite of products is not only reasonably priced, it's one of the easiest tax filing services to understand.
SnapTax by TurboTax is one of the most intuitive tax apps I've seen since you can import photos of your W-2 documents. Once that's done SnapTax will import all the information off of them. After that just enter some basic information and you're good to go. Federal taxes cost you nothing with SnapTax as long as you're filing short form. If you'd like to file state with your federal return, you can do so for a one time purchase of $14.99.
If you want to get your taxes done as fast as possible, SnapTax will take you less than 20 minutes.
If your taxes are a little more complicated than what most tax apps can handle, or you just don't trust them, TaxCaster is a good tool that can help you estimate how much you are entitled to get back. Or if you're the other way around, it can tell you what you owe. Just give it your information and TurboTax provides an estimate of what it thinks you'll owe.
If you want to be prepared for when you walk into your accountant's office, TaxCaster can give you an idea of what to expect ahead of time.
The H&R Block 1040EZ app is very similar to SnapTax and lets you take photos of your documents and imports them for you. The same rules apply and the app only supports easier returns that can be filed via an EZ form. If you've only got a few W-2's and you don't need to be itemized, you're good to go. In my experience H&R Block software seems slightly better at explaining things than TurboTax so that's something to think about when deciding. However, the biggest difference is that SnapTax is free to file federal while H&R Block 1040EZ will cost you $10 for preparation.
If you want better walkthroughs than what most other services provide and you're willing to pay a few bucks for that, H&R Block 1040EZ is your best bet.