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If you still need to do your US tax returns, you had better get a move on. The April 15th deadline is fast approaching. If you don't already have a favorite tax return package, and you don't pay somebody else to prepare your returns, check out TaxACT. There is a free version that handles simple and complex returns, and you can do it all online or via a downloadable package.
But what you really want to know is...
How Long Does It Take to Prepare a US Tax Return?
The short answer is, longer than you would like. The long answer is, it depends, specifically on:
- Your knowledge of the tax code,
- The complexity of your situation,
- How organized you are.
How Using TaxACT Helps
TaxACT can make the job faster and easier by automatically completing the appropriate tax forms using your answers to questions generated by the software. Unless you have dedicated your life to understanding the tax code, this can be a real time-saver. The expertise built into the software helps you:
- Find all deductions and credits,
- Account for the latest changes in the tax code,
- Do the math correctly (one of the more common reasons the IRS rejects returns),
- Identify possible errors through an alert system,
- Find several options on how to pay your taxes and receive your refund,
- E-file your return (which speeds up the receipt of your refund),
- Complete a state return quickly at the same time by transferring all your federal information to state forms.
Getting it done fast is important. Getting it done right -- so that you don't over-pay or under-report -- is even more important.
About an Hour and Free
With TaxACT, those who have just one W-2 with zero to few deductions could easily finish their return in less than an hour. Those with two to four W-2s and a few deductions would likely finish their return in about an hour.
TaxACT follows a "freemium" strategy. The TaxACT Standard package is free for all taxpayers, regardless of income; it provides solutions for preparing, printing and e-filing your return and can handle both simple and complex returns.
Check out TaxACT's online tax filing solution.