What software to choose to make your tax return?
Doing taxes using software is still scary to many people ... Yet, it should not!
It's clear that the tax world is full of subtleties and that you still need to be informed to fill in the correct sections of the forms, but the tax software as such is simple to use when you follow well the instructions.
Moreover, an online solution can be economical and much more reliable than dealing with a "ti-clin" who improvise tax specialist 2 months a year!
The question that is often sent to us by e-mail is: which tax software to choose?
Here is a summary of the advice and recommendations of the experts we consulted.
Which software to choose?
The offer of tax software does not change much from one year to the next, we find the same names and there is not really one that is better than another, it is only the interfaces that Change.
The three main software packages for Quebecers are QuickTax , UFile, and H & R Block .
As such, H & R Block also offers in-person services directly to their offices, but for the past few years, they've been innovating by allowing citizens to use their easy and free software to make their tax returns.
There is a greater reliance on software that allows people to report on their own without fear of missing an important item and not those who are putting pressure to use their paid services.
For TurboTax, prices are similar and they differ mainly in how they fill out returns. In the end, it's a matter of taste!
TurboTax, UFile, H & R Block?
A few points to highlight
- All the software works on the same principle: we first go through an "interview", that is to say we answer questions allowing identifying the maximum credits and deductions to which one is entitled And which forms must be completed. Then, you begin to enter the information in the forms.
- With TurboTax and UFile, information from previous years can easily be imported if the same software was used for its last statement.
- TurboTax is usually a bit more expensive than the other two, but it has a higher reputation in Canada.
- H & R Block now offers a free online solution for your tax return, and paid versions if you want additional assistance or protection.
- There are different versions of this software. Among other things, it is possible to make more than one report with the same or to use a version specially designed for students.
Tax credits, access codes and statements
The three programs work the same way.
- For the provincial tax, those who make a first declaration must register for direct deposit.
- No need for a federal or provincial access code to make and send a digital declaration. The access code that was sent for the electronic transmission of your provincial return is now replaced by the date of birth and the SIN.
- For paper shipments, no need to include statements
- Reminder: the tax credit for the QST, property taxes and the tax credit for the Nordic region has been replaced by the solidarity credit for a few years.
Tips and Warnings...
- Before you begin your statement, make sure you have made the updates to the software you are using.
- Always print your tax return even if you send it electronically. You may not know if you will need it during the year and a computer glitch is so quickly arrived.
- Some software companies offer free services and advice, sometimes these are offered by professionals, sometimes it is the other users who provide help.
The "online" versions of the software are compatible with Macs. But it is necessary to know that the "physical" software is not however...
For Windows computers, no worries about compatibility.
The software mentioned above is substantially equivalent. If your statement is simple enough, it is an economical solution in addition to being easy even if you have never done so. These software packages are intended for the general public and all offer technical support if you have questions or problems.
You can usually do your tax report for free if you are a student. Same thing if you have a simple statement to do (a single record of employment, no investment income, etc.) with TurboTax.