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Tax Filing Recommendations (Business, Family, Student)

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Old 02-10-2013, 07:31 PM   #1
jeckel7234 [OP] jeckel7234 is offline
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Tax Filing Recommendations (Business, Family, Student)

For the last few years I've been using turbo tax with pretty good luck until last year,I screwed the pooch and ended up owing about 2k. But in 2012 I started a business, only grossed a couple grand, am a full time student, married with a kid and between the wife and I have 4 w-2 from other jobs, and pay for pre school. Do any of y'all have any good recommendations. I feel like h&r block and the other chain type places are full of people who don't really know much more than anyone else and just plug it into a turbo tax type software. And the bank I'm a member of said they'd charge about $300 which seems steap.
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:34 PM   #2
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I use HR block for piece of mind. I got screwed one year by having some guys on base do it. I will never make that mistake again. I will pay for a "professional" that I can hold accountable for any screw up to do it for me.

But mine mainly comes from state taxes, not federal. Oregon requires me to file, but I don't pay. I have to have the right thing written on top of the form.
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:02 PM   #3
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You are correct on H&R Block, and most "strip mall" tax preparers... they are simply using a business-licensed version of Turbotax, Tax Cut, or whatever software their company uses. The advantage is they accept the liability for mistakes and may offer to represent you in an audit (and home business is a major red flag).

Your only alternative is to spend the big bucks and use a CPA or other professional tax guy. It won't be cheap, but they will find ANYTHING that you can legitimately deduct, and add a few things that aren't so legitimate, but they know what will and won't trigger an audit.

I did my own taxes for years, but it got to the point that it was more complex, so I went to H&R Block. I owed $2k to Fed and $600 to state.
Told them "No thanks" and walked out.
Went to a guy recommended by a guy I worked with and he was able to work the numbers so I got 2k back from the Fed and owed the state $250.
Don't know what he did, but we were never audited and he said that if we were, he'd be with us.
Talked to the guy at work and he said that in 10 years, he was audited once, and Reynaldo was with him and he ended up not having to pay more.

I started using Turbotax based on my boss's recommendation in 1997 and I've used it ever since. Always been very happy with my results... my final effective tax rate is generally in the 12-15% range, a bit better now that my wife is on disability and only 80% of her income is taxable.
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:19 PM   #4
jeckel7234 [OP] jeckel7234 is offline
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Thanks for the replies, and I've done a little more reading online about h&r block and the others and most people don't seem very happy with the results
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:22 PM   #5
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I use HR Block online. But if you need to see an actual person definitely go to a CPA.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:46 AM   #6
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Once you say you started a business, I think you need to talk w/ someone to at least get rolling. The first couple years of having a business - Professional CPA type advice will keep you safe. Once the business is established and everything has normalized, than maybe get back to doing it on your own.
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