Tax software awareness week

posted in: Linux, Ubuntu | 0

What is it about taxes that makes people so nervous? Is it the government? Maybe it’s the paperwork, the process, the endless updates to tax laws and the bureaucracy surrounding it. It goes up, it comes down and whenever possible – we avoid it like a root canal.

Sure. Could be. Seems to me that people have a natural inclination to be lazy, and that’s not bad, but it is something to be aware of. There are 3 general categories of taxpayers: those that pay others to do it for them, those that just refuse to acknowledge the institution and those that do their own taxes.

Most people will fall into the first category – we have better things to do with our time. It gives us satisfaction to know that someone else, someone who knows what they are doing, is going to do my taxes. All that I have to do is give them all my W2’s, receipts (all carefully collected in a Vans shoebox under the desk) and some money. We have other things that we specialize in, and in return, we want someone that specializes in personal taxes to lead us. We respect the institution, albeit begrudgingly, and want to be in the good graces of government even if it costs.

Some us really resent the fact that the goverment, be it local or federal, bothers us at all – even if they are striving to make changes we as a society can’t afford. Chances are we’re not making that much from the gitgo, so why do I have to cough another 15-20%? Money that would be paid towards taxes are spent on gas money, dinner with a friend or textbooks – so whose the worse? It still gets pumped back into the economy and there’s less paperwork for everyone.

Then there are those that really resent the goverment – so much so that they actually try to understand all verbage, keep up with changes in policy and actually make a living supporting other that fall into the first category (and more often than not, those in the second category that are dragged kicking and screaming into the first category). With the growing popularity of DIY tax software, this group has grown over the past 3-4 years in accordance with the depth of it’s functionality.

This last group intrigues me the most. I will be taking a pass at Turbotax this year – and why not? I have used H&R Block for the last 3 years (not this year) to the tune of about $120 – $150 a shot, so seeing as how it’s only about $40 for TurboTax, I think I’m ready to give it a go. Then again, for all of those out in Denver, there’s always the Free File Alliance, why pay for it when they’re giving it away…

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