Online Tax Preparation and Filing Online Tax Preparation and Filing Reviews & Prices

Preparing your taxes online is easy, secure, and much cheaper than using an accountant. We've reviewed a number of services that will help you prepare your state and federal tax returns online and e-file them with the IRS. Each service offers web-based preparation tools that will walk you through each step of the process. Our comparison chart is designed to help you determine which online tax service is best suited to your individual needs, whether you have a complex return with many specialized deductions, or if you simply need a cheap and easy way to file your 1040EZ form. To learn more about online tax preparation services, visit our FAQ.

Updated 04-14-2016

Online Tax Preparation and Filing Comparison Chart

Service Name & RatingOnline Federal Tax ProductsFederal Only FeesState Only FeesSupport OptionsAudit ProtectionBottom Line
H&R Block Free Federal: Free
Basic: $21.24
Deluxe: $29.74
Premium: $42.49

*prices include 15% discount
Free for everyone, upgraded services $21.24 - $42.49$9.99 - $36.99Unlimited access to online help center; Premium plan includes single consultation with tax professionalWorry Free Audit Support guarantees assistance from an H&R Block tax professional in the case of an audit

Tax Identity Shield: $30
Best overall service provider with its Free Federal Return, good support and audit protection; 15% discount on all plans
TurboTax Free Federal: Free
Deluxe: $54.99
Premier: $79.99
Home & Business: $104.99
Free if filing simple returns, otherwise $54.99-$104.99$29.99 for simple returns, otherwise $39.99 per statePhone and online chat plus access to live community Q&AAudit Audit Support Guarantee (included in all plans) provides free audit guidance from a tax professional

Audit Defense: $14.95
TurboTax Max: $39.99
Fastest and easiest service around with the best online deduction finder tools and excellent customer support
TaxACT Free Federal: Free
Basic: $14.99
Plus: $24.99
Premium: $34.99
$14.99-$34.99Free with Free Federal; $14.99 with Basic; $24.99 for all other editionsUnlimited email support; access to Answer Center; Phone support included with paid plansTax Audit Defense protection plan for $44.99 Great value for filing your taxes online; email customer support for all plans and phone support for paid plans; pricey audit protection
eSmart Tax Free Federal: Free
Basic: 24.95
Deluxe: $39.95
Premium: $59.95
Free for everyone, upgraded services $24.95-$59.95$31.95 if you file with your federal returnEmail and chat optionsFree Basic Audit Assistance

Enhanced Professional Audit Assistance: $14.95
Standard service with a few cool base features, including a Maximum Refund Guarantee; pricey extras can add up
FreeTaxUSA Free Federal: Free
Deluxe Edition: $5.36 (includes 10% discount)
Free for everyone, upgraded services $5.3611.66 (includes 10% discount)Access to online help center; email supportIncluded with the Deluxe plan Unbeatable price covers everything from free to complex returns; limited support options and simplistic interface
Service Name & RatingOnline Federal Tax ProductsFederal Only FeesState Only FeesSupport OptionsAudit ProtectionBottom Line
E-file.com Free Federal: Free
Deluxe: $18.99
Premium: $34.95

*prices include 24% discount
Free if filing simple returns, otherwise $18.99-$34.95$19 for everyone24/7 access via mail support ticket onlyAvailable for an additional fee of $19.95 Limited support and simplistic interface make it less competitive; good option for simple filers and those who don't need audit support
Liberty Tax Service Federal E-file:
EZ:$19.95
Basic: $29.95
Deluxe: $54.95
Premium: $79.95
$19.95 - $79.95$31.95 for all editionsUnlimited access to tech support via live chat, email and phoneFree Basic Audit Assistance

Enhanced Professional Audit Assistance: $14.95
Pricey option for both federal and state filing; thorough customer service and helpful FAQs

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