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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Taxes => Topic started by: ThePauperOfNorthLake on January 05, 2017, 06:41:02 PM

Title: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: ThePauperOfNorthLake on January 05, 2017, 06:41:02 PM
https://www.creditkarma.com/tax

Has anyone tried it yet? Ive used TurboTax the past few years mostly out of convenience.

Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: geekette on January 05, 2017, 06:44:40 PM
Can't try it yet because it's not yet available.  You can get on their list, though.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: tarheeldan on January 05, 2017, 07:30:02 PM
I'm on the list, excited to try it when it's out!
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: stepitup on January 10, 2017, 10:55:37 PM
I encourage someone who uses it to post a review. I'm considering using it for mine after I receive all my forms.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Dave1442397 on January 12, 2017, 07:09:11 AM
I'm going to try it too. I'll probably also run through my return on TurboTax just because they have all my info there already.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: GrumpyPenguin on January 12, 2017, 07:52:55 AM
Curious if this is any good, but I'd be reluctant.  I use Credit Karma, and so they already have my credit info.  Since you don't pay anything for it, and it's not some open source project, obviously you're the product... so I'd be concerned about given them all of my other financial/income info. 
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: tarheeldan on January 19, 2017, 11:21:21 AM
I just checked, Credit Karma Tax is up and running! I don't have all my 1099s etc, but I'll update here as I go through the process.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on January 19, 2017, 11:47:53 AM
I just checked, Credit Karma Tax is up and running! I don't have all my 1099s etc, but I'll update here as I go through the process.

It still tells me "You're on the list" but I cannot start doing them.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: tarheeldan on January 19, 2017, 12:10:18 PM
It still tells me "You're on the list" but I cannot start doing them.

That's weird, I just opened an Incognito tab in Chrome and it offers Karma Tax to everyone right on the home page. Maybe Ctrl+F5?
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on January 19, 2017, 12:12:10 PM
It still tells me "You're on the list" but I cannot start doing them.

That's weird, I just opened an Incognito tab in Chrome and it offers Karma Tax to everyone right on the home page. Maybe Ctrl+F5?

They've been advertising it for a few weeks now. If you try to start though, it will put you on a waiting list.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: tarheeldan on January 19, 2017, 12:14:17 PM
No, I was able to start my return with Karma Tax - put in my basic info, signed the consent to send info the IRS, and I'll do my W-2 when I get home. Can't do 1099's until they're out though :/
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on January 19, 2017, 12:20:02 PM
No, I was able to start my return with Karma Tax - put in my basic info, signed the consent to send info the IRS, and I'll do my W-2 when I get home. Can't do 1099's until they're out though :/

wow, that's weird.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on January 20, 2017, 12:17:19 PM
i'm stoked about this. paid 200 to turbo tax last year b/c i needed a schedule C
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on January 20, 2017, 12:47:19 PM
I'm interested too.  It'll only save me $15, I usually use TaxAct and they autofill almost everything.  I may try filling out returns on both just to see how they match up, on TaxAct I don't think you have to pay until you hit certain items like special forms or printing/filing the return.  I won't likely do it until April so don't rely on me for a review anytime soon!
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: TomTX on January 21, 2017, 07:42:17 AM
Will it handle a Schedule C for my side-gig income?
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: tarheeldan on January 21, 2017, 08:19:02 AM
Yes, it looks like it:
https://help.creditkarma.com/hc/en-us/articles/217378726-Forms-supported-by-Credit-Karma-Tax
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: kudy on January 21, 2017, 08:20:38 AM
I got "in" a few days ago.

I don't have all of my tax docs yet, but I did start entering numbers. So far, it's a really straightforward platform that I am finding very easy to use. It has Schedule C and every other possible type of income listed on the "Income" tab (I haven't started the Schedule C section yet, still waiting on 1099's).

I also haven't gotten to the end yet, I half expect some sort of upsell based on the complexity of my return, but if it truly is 100% free I may use it to file my taxes this year. Otherwise, I will go back to Free Tax USA and pay them a few dollars for the state return and audit protection.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on January 21, 2017, 09:34:36 AM
I filled everything out with Turbotax and Credit Karma and my refunds look very different between the two.

Can anyone else compare Credit Karma against Turbotax/TaxAct/etc to see if it's just me? The more data points, the merrier =)
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: TomTX on January 21, 2017, 09:59:29 AM
I filled everything out with Turbotax and Credit Karma and my refunds look very different between the two.

Can anyone else compare Credit Karma against Turbotax/TaxAct/etc to see if it's just me? The more data points, the merrier =)

Can you give some more detail? Which has more tax, what's the difference, are you just W-2, or what 1099s will you have, do you have side-gig/business income?
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on January 21, 2017, 10:06:58 AM
I filled everything out with Turbotax and Credit Karma and my refunds look very different between the two.

Can anyone else compare Credit Karma against Turbotax/TaxAct/etc to see if it's just me? The more data points, the merrier =)

Can you give some more detail? Which has more tax, what's the difference, are you just W-2, or what 1099s will you have, do you have side-gig/business income?

Yes please provide more information.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on January 21, 2017, 10:12:25 AM
Turbo Tax is giving me $1930 Federal back, and $3687 state back.
Credit Karma is saying I OWE $548 Fed, and get $3544 back from state.

I am 100% W-2 employee with $1310 of 1099-INT's from bank bonus sign ups.


One thing I noticed about TT is it took into account last year's state refund and counted it against this year's Fed refund. (my only itemized deduction on Fed last year was my state tax). This further skews things because it should technically lower my federal refund but TT is still giving me back way more than what CK is saying I owe.

Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on January 21, 2017, 10:18:22 AM
I figured it out, despite having selected "Use itemized deduction" on CK form, it still autofilled the standard deduction.

Something to look at when you do your own taxes.

My refund with TT is still $195 higher AND they are taking into account last year's NYS tax refund, which CK is not.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: TomTX on January 21, 2017, 10:27:28 AM
I figured it out, despite having selected "Use itemized deduction" on CK form, it still autofilled the standard deduction.

Something to look at when you do your own taxes.

My refund with TT is still $195 higher AND they are taking into account last year's NYS tax refund, which CK is not.

I would shoot an email to Credit Karma
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on January 21, 2017, 04:34:55 PM
I figured it out, despite having selected "Use itemized deduction" on CK form, it still autofilled the standard deduction.

Something to look at when you do your own taxes.

My refund with TT is still $195 higher AND they are taking into account last year's NYS tax refund, which CK is not.

That's ridiculous, it should automatically choose the option with the lowest tax!  What's next, the "voluntarily overpay by $2k" option?
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on January 21, 2017, 04:53:23 PM
First year they've done it completely free service.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: maizeman on January 21, 2017, 05:01:20 PM
Well they support K-1s. I'm kind of tempted to give this a shot.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: CareCPA on January 21, 2017, 05:51:39 PM
I may be biased, but my advice for using CK is the same as for any other tax prep software: if you don't know what the answer should be when you're finished, you might want to reconsider doing your own taxes. Completely relying on software for anything can end up badly.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on January 22, 2017, 02:35:37 AM
First year they've done it completely free service.

It's not free, it costs hundreds in lost refunds
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on January 22, 2017, 04:05:38 AM
First year they've done it completely free service.

It's not free, it costs hundreds in lost refunds

I'm saying if you cross check k with turbo. But as stated above you should've able to calculate what your refund is pretty easily on your own then just use software to fill in the paperwork
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: kudy on January 22, 2017, 09:45:05 AM
I tried to do a Schedule C for my freelance work on the CK app last night, and as far as I can tell it was calculating my total profit incorrectly. I also couldn't find a place anywhere to add my SEP IRA contributions.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dhc on January 22, 2017, 08:54:15 PM
I've also started entering the easy stuff to try it out.

Positive: almost everything seems to have a "tax form" view that closely mirrors the actual form in both layout and wording. Much better than "interview" style in my opinion. State taxes with free e-file will be wonderful (my state has a clunky fillable PDF-based system that's free, but I tend to spend more time on that portion of our taxes just fighting the forms than I do actually calculating taxes, which is my least favorite part of the whole process).

Negative: it's super buggy so far. For filing jointly, the many places where it asks who xyz form is for don't seem to stick consistently, and if you edit things it goes back to default values. Some fields that should auto-fill (for instance, SSN based on whose form it is) do occasionally but not consistently in "tax form" view.

Luckily my plan was always going to be to fill out both this and FreeTaxUSA to compare, perhaps with an additional hand-calculated copy just for my sanity.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Drifterrider on January 23, 2017, 11:57:45 AM
So, are you guys downloading an application to your computer or are your storing your information on someone else's "cloud"?

I always file free, I've never been able to file electronically for free (fed.  my state has its own database).
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: NathanP on January 23, 2017, 07:26:34 PM
I ran into the issue (mentioned above) of Credit Karma automatically choosing the smaller standard deduction. I selected the "use itemized" value and it corrected itself.

My one remaining issue is that in the "Other Income" tab, it is showing $6750, which appears to come from Box 12, code W from my W2. I did place $6750 into my HSA for the year, but that is tax free. When I enter the "Other Income" tab, all values are zeroed! If this doesn't correct itself in a day or two, I will email them.

I looked over the final forms and everything looks similar to last years filing.

Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: TomTX on January 23, 2017, 07:46:30 PM
Admittedly this is WAY early in the tax cycle for most people.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: catccc on January 23, 2017, 08:23:02 PM
I may be biased, but my advice for using CK is the same as for any other tax prep software: if you don't know what the answer should be when you're finished, you might want to reconsider doing your own taxes. Completely relying on software for anything can end up badly.

This.  But I'm another CPA.  I do think that if you started out doing your own taxes and understood how it worked (maybe when working part time as a teen) you can gradually learn all the ins and outs of what you have going on with your return.  At least learn the basic math behind it all and you can easily ballpark what the outcome should be.  Income - adjustments - exemptions -deductions = taxable income, then do the math or look at a tax table to figure taxes.  Taxes - credits - withholding - estimated payments if any = bottom line, what you owe or get back.  If you have income treated specially (i.e. qualified dividends or LT capital gains) just keep them out of the first calculation, then add those taxes at the advantageous rates to what you calculated or got from the tax table.  Okay, so I may have over simplified, but this is the basics...
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: TomTX on January 24, 2017, 04:34:00 AM
I may be biased, but my advice for using CK is the same as for any other tax prep software: if you don't know what the answer should be when you're finished, you might want to reconsider doing your own taxes. Completely relying on software for anything can end up badly.

This.  But I'm another CPA.  I do think that if you started out doing your own taxes and understood how it worked (maybe when working part time as a teen) you can gradually learn all the ins and outs of what you have going on with your return.  At least learn the basic math behind it all and you can easily ballpark what the outcome should be.  Income - adjustments - exemptions -deductions = taxable income, then do the math or look at a tax table to figure taxes.  Taxes - credits - withholding - estimated payments if any = bottom line, what you owe or get back.  If you have income treated specially (i.e. qualified dividends or LT capital gains) just keep them out of the first calculation, then add those taxes at the advantageous rates to what you calculated or got from the tax table.  Okay, so I may have over simplified, but this is the basics...

Not a CPA. Don't even play one on TV.

Historically I have filled out in software, then gone through the calculations in "form view"* as a sanity check. I have had to brute force some stuff that was missed more than once (and have only used the "big names" of TurboTax and HRBlock/TaxCut.) I also go read the IRS guidance.

*Or whatever they call it when you dump out of the interview and look at the forms themselves.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: NathanP on January 24, 2017, 07:15:12 AM
I ran into the issue (mentioned above) of Credit Karma automatically choosing the smaller standard deduction. I selected the "use itemized" value and it corrected itself.

My one remaining issue is that in the "Other Income" tab, it is showing $6750, which appears to come from Box 12, code W from my W2. I did place $6750 into my HSA for the year, but that is tax free. When I enter the "Other Income" tab, all values are zeroed! If this doesn't correct itself in a day or two, I will email them.

I looked over the final forms and everything looks similar to last years filing.

I revisited my tax return today and was able to correct the HSA problem. On the Deductions page, I needed to visit the health care section and tick the boxes indicating that I had coverage for the full year. This change removed my HSA contribution from the "Other Income" section on the Income page. With this correction my return now matches the one I completed using H&R Block's site. I reviewed the IRS forms and everything looks ready to submit. I will wait a week for my state to begin accepting returns so that I can file both federal and state at the same time.

Keep in mind that my tax return is not complicated: married filing jointly, W2 income, itemized deductions for mortgage, state tax, property tax and charitable. I have a small amount of dividends in a taxable account.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: catccc on January 24, 2017, 09:29:32 AM

Not a CPA. Don't even play one on TV.

Historically I have filled out in software, then gone through the calculations in "form view"* as a sanity check. I have had to brute force some stuff that was missed more than once (and have only used the "big names" of TurboTax and HRBlock/TaxCut.) I also go read the IRS guidance.

*Or whatever they call it when you dump out of the interview and look at the forms themselves.

Emphasis mine... yes!  The rules are all out there.  Not the most fun reading, but it's got what you need to know.  Most of the time.  I actually do my returns manually because I hate the interview interface and just want to drop the numbers into the forms.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Nothlit on January 24, 2017, 12:06:37 PM
I ran into the issue (mentioned above) of Credit Karma automatically choosing the smaller standard deduction. I selected the "use itemized" value and it corrected itself.

My one remaining issue is that in the "Other Income" tab, it is showing $6750, which appears to come from Box 12, code W from my W2. I did place $6750 into my HSA for the year, but that is tax free. When I enter the "Other Income" tab, all values are zeroed! If this doesn't correct itself in a day or two, I will email them.

I looked over the final forms and everything looks similar to last years filing.

I revisited my tax return today and was able to correct the HSA problem. On the Deductions page, I needed to visit the health care section and tick the boxes indicating that I had coverage for the full year. This change removed my HSA contribution from the "Other Income" section on the Income page. With this correction my return now matches the one I completed using H&R Block's site. I reviewed the IRS forms and everything looks ready to submit. I will wait a week for my state to begin accepting returns so that I can file both federal and state at the same time.

Keep in mind that my tax return is not complicated: married filing jointly, W2 income, itemized deductions for mortgage, state tax, property tax and charitable. I have a small amount of dividends in a taxable account.

I had the same (brief) confusion regarding box 12 HSA contributions. They should make it more clear where that "other income" is coming from. Hopefully the final review step would warn a user who entered box 12 HSA $ and didn't fill out the healthcare section.

For being their first year, I'm impressed that they're offering federal and all the states. I would have expected them to start with just federal and maybe add states in a year or two. Their implementation is definitely still a little rough around the edges. I plan on double checking everything. They're not letting me fill out Massachusetts forms yet, so I'll have to check back in a couple of weeks for that.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on January 26, 2017, 12:19:48 PM
will this allow for 2 different states.  it doesnt appear to work for that.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: johnny847 on January 27, 2017, 10:12:42 AM
So, are you guys downloading an application to your computer or are your storing your information on someone else's "cloud"?

I always file free, I've never been able to file electronically for free (fed.  my state has its own database).

Yes you have. You just didn't realize it.

https://www.irs.gov/uac/free-file-do-your-federal-taxes-for-free (https://www.irs.gov/uac/free-file-do-your-federal-taxes-for-free)

Do not get confused. Having an income below $64k IS NOT a requirement to electronically file your federal returns for free. But if you do have an income below $64k, you get to use the tax software offering (like the offering of CK, TT, etc.).

With an income above $64k you can still use the Free File Fillable Forms. You're literally just filling out the tax forms digitally - it has no questionnaire and doesn't help you figure out your taxes (other than doing the very simple math on the form - such as Income is the sum of lines 7 through 21).
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Nothlit on February 04, 2017, 03:55:10 PM
Update on my Credit Karma experience.

They do not appear to fully support Massachusetts Schedule B, which is necessary to deduct state-tax-exempt interest (like federal savings bonds, which I sold a few of last year). I've sent them an email to see what's up, but am thinking I will have to file elsewhere if they can't fix this problem.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: yachi on February 04, 2017, 05:56:37 PM
I'm posting specifically because I saw another Pennsylvania mustachian.  Do not use CreditKarma for Pennsylvania taxes.  They over-inflate your wages by adding your retirement contributions to your Social security wages!

401(k) contributions aren't deductible in Pennsylvania, which is why they're trying to add them to wages, but they're pulling the wrong wage box from the W-2.

Here's my Turbotax to CreditKarma comparison:

Federal:
$483 Turbotax
$520 CreditKarma
State:
$420 Turbotax
$905 CreditKarma

I can't guarantee the CreditKarma federal return is fine tuned because I lost faith after finding the problem with state taxes.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: prettypaperwork on February 04, 2017, 06:18:26 PM
I have used H & R Block online in the past.  I used Credit Karma for 2016 tax returns.  I tested CK against H & R results and both had the same refund amounts for fed and state (CA).  I only had W-2 income and a few 1099-Rs (a rollover 401k and a Roth IRA to tIRA recharacterization).Nothing too fancy.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: fifh on February 05, 2017, 10:29:23 AM
Appears I was too quick to file with CK. Based on this thread, compared my TT return to CK: TT is ~$600 more than CK.

Happy to pay TT the $100+ for the better return. If you have the time, its worth comparing different offerings before pulling the trigger. In this case with CK being a brand-new offering, likely a lot of wrinkles to iron out.

Silver-lining: haven't filed amended Federal and State Tax Returns before. Look forward to learning about the process ;)
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Spork on February 05, 2017, 10:38:32 AM

HUGE Caveat:  I have no dealings with Credit Karma ever.  None.  Zilch.  I'm totally speaking out of my butt on this.  But... something always gave me the icky willies from them.  They have enormous advertising budget and offer nothing but free services.  I'm not buying it.

They are probably not going to steal your identity, swindle your life savings and steal your cat.  In fact, they're probably just fine.  But... something seems sleazy.  I can't put my finger on it.  But it's enough that I'd never give them my personal information -- and I especially wouldn't trust them to handle my taxes.

Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: johnny847 on February 05, 2017, 12:54:57 PM

HUGE Caveat:  I have no dealings with Credit Karma ever.  None.  Zilch.  I'm totally speaking out of my butt on this.  But... something always gave me the icky willies from them.  They have enormous advertising budget and offer nothing but free services.  I'm not buying it.

They are probably not going to steal your identity, swindle your life savings and steal your cat.  In fact, they're probably just fine.  But... something seems sleazy.  I can't put my finger on it.  But it's enough that I'd never give them my personal information -- and I especially wouldn't trust them to handle my taxes.

They definitely share information with their affiliates. I didn't try to find a lsit of affiliates
Quote
Affiliates: We may share certain information with our affiliated companies, such as Credit Karma, to help us provide our Services and manage your account.


I wouldn't say this is sleezy, but CK doesn't help you with Audits unlike TurboTax and H&R Block.

Quote
3.3 Credit Karma Tax Does Not Audit You or Help you with Audits

It is your responsibility to provide Credit Karma Tax with complete and accurate information. Our Services do not include any audit, tax planning, or tax structuring services. Filing your income taxes may involve taking certain tax-reporting positions and you are solely responsible for the positions contained in your tax returns. You understand that taking aggressive tax-reporting positions may increase your risk of audit. Credit Karma Tax cannot assist you with any audits.

TL;DR:

We don't provide tax structuring advice. Depending on the choices you make in preparing your income tax returns and the positions you take in your income tax returns, you may be more or less likely to be audited. We canít help you with audits.
(No seriously - CK has TL;DR's in their ToS)
https://www.creditkarma.com/tax/terms (https://www.creditkarma.com/tax/terms)

Quote
Our TurboTax Audit Support Guarantee gives you free audit guidance from a trained tax professional to help you understand your IRS notice and answer all your audit-related questions.

This Guarantee covers all 2014, 2015, and 2016 federal and state returns prepared in TurboTax Basic, Deluxe, Premier, Home & Business, Self-Employed, Free Edition, and Freedom Edition.

You get:
  • One-on-one audit guidance from an experienced tax professional;
  • Year-round answers to your audit questions; and
  • Assistance with what to expect and how to prepare for the audit
https://ttlc.intuit.com/questions/1901504-what-is-the-turbotax-audit-support-guarantee (https://ttlc.intuit.com/questions/1901504-what-is-the-turbotax-audit-support-guarantee)

Quote
File your taxes confidently knowing H&R Block is behind you every step of the way. We include Free In-person Audit Support with H&R Block Basic, Deluxe, Premium, and Premium & Business desktop software. This means that in the unlikely event of an audit, an H&R Block Enrolled Agent will help you manage the process by:

  • IRS Correspondence Management - H&R Block will assist with notices that are initiated by the IRS or State Department of Revenue(s).
  • Audit Preparation - H&R Block will provide detailed information regarding how to prepare for an audit, and extend an offer for an H&R Block Enrolled Agent to represent you in the event of an audit
  • Audit Representation - An H&R Block Enrolled Agent guides you through what to expect during the audit, attends the audit with you and helps you manage the entire audit experience
https://www.hrblock.com/online-tax-filing/guarantees/worry-free-audit-support.html (https://www.hrblock.com/online-tax-filing/guarantees/worry-free-audit-support.html)
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Spork on February 05, 2017, 01:28:00 PM
Do they have any guarantee of "correctness"?  I.e., something like Turbotax's "100% Accuracy Guarantee".

Audit help is nice...  I mostly want it to be "right".  If it is "right" then I think I'm less likely to be audited and the audit will be a non-event.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on February 06, 2017, 05:27:46 PM
Just a reminder that you can file an amended return if CK messed something up for $$$
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: SpareChange on February 09, 2017, 10:21:35 AM
Does CK not let you claim the FTC? I just tried to file and can't find a way to do it.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: tarheeldan on February 09, 2017, 11:04:52 AM
So far so good for me, CreditKarma and TaxAct are identical after entering W-2, 1099-DIV, and 1099-B :-)

SpareChange - which one's the FTC? Here is the menu listing of credits I found within the software:


(Child Tax Credit and Additional Child Tax Credit are calculated automatically.)

Adoption credit
Earned income credit
Dependent care credit
Credit for the elderly or disabled

Residential energy credits
First time homebuyer credit repayment
Mortgage interest credit

Alternative motor vehicle credit
Fuel tax credit
Qualified plug-in electric drive vehicle credit
Qualified electric vehicle credit (passive activity)

Education credit
Retirement contribution credit
Earned income credit after disallowance (Form 8862)
Alternative minimum tax credit
District of Columbia first-time homebuyer credit
General business credit
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: SpareChange on February 09, 2017, 11:41:58 AM
Foreign Tax Credit on foreign taxes paid through the etf (VT) I hold in taxable. It's less than $300, so I don't need to file a 1116. I've used HRBlock free online for years, but they want me to upgrade to use claim an HSA deduction. No thanks. Thought I'd give CK a try.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: MN on February 11, 2017, 04:13:41 PM
I tried it. Federal was correct, however it did not properly calculate the MN state M1M form. I submitted a question about it and got a reply a few days later that wasn't related to my question.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dhc on February 11, 2017, 08:44:37 PM
More bugs:

No thanks! Back to freetaxusa for me this year, even if I have to fill out my state return by hand.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: sirdoug007 on February 12, 2017, 12:59:18 AM
Crap.  I didn't catch that it put HSA contributions as income!!! 

I send a message to them.  I can't even edit this in my tax return online.  I guess I will have to refile.  Ugh.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on February 12, 2017, 04:55:25 AM
Crap.  I didn't catch that it put HSA contributions as income!!! 

I send a message to them.  I can't even edit this in my tax return online.  I guess I will have to refile.  Ugh.

They aren't if you fill out the healthcare part correctly
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: sirdoug007 on February 12, 2017, 05:43:59 AM
Crap.  I didn't catch that it put HSA contributions as income!!! 

I send a message to them.  I can't even edit this in my tax return online.  I guess I will have to refile.  Ugh.

They aren't if you fill out the healthcare part correctly

Where did I go wrong?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Nothlit on February 12, 2017, 07:41:13 AM
Crap.  I didn't catch that it put HSA contributions as income!!! 

I send a message to them.  I can't even edit this in my tax return online.  I guess I will have to refile.  Ugh.

They aren't if you fill out the healthcare part correctly

Where did I go wrong?

Under the "Deductions" section, the section labeled "Health savings account (HSA) contributions and deductions". Unless you fill this out and indicate that you had HSA-compatible health insurance, CK will assume any W-2 box 12 HSA contributions are includable as "other income" (1040 line 21).
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Drifterrider on February 13, 2017, 12:21:34 PM
Does any of this "free" software allow you to file electronically for "free" without regards to AGI, MAGI and forms needed?  I use 1040, Schs A, B, C, E and AMT.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on February 13, 2017, 01:08:26 PM
i have "other income" that i have no clue where it is coming from.

It appears this is from my 1099-SA i took 912 dollars in distributions from my HSA last year.  It is taxing 817 dollars worth this doesnt make sense to me.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on February 13, 2017, 01:43:23 PM
i think i figured it out i needed to put 912 in my unreimbursed expenses level.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Nothlit on February 13, 2017, 03:08:36 PM
Does any of this "free" software allow you to file electronically for "free" without regards to AGI, MAGI and forms needed?  I use 1040, Schs A, B, C, E and AMT.

Yes, Credit Karma supports all of those schedules for free with no income limits. However, given the issues I and others have shared so far in this thread, I would avoid Credit Karma unless you are comfortable and confident you can double-check the accuracy of their results before filing.

FreeTaxUSA/TaxHawk is another totally free option that supports all of the things you listed, and has been around for a while. I've used it the past couple of years with no complaints. No income limits there either.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dhc on February 13, 2017, 04:25:17 PM
Does any of this "free" software allow you to file electronically for "free" without regards to AGI, MAGI and forms needed?  I use 1040, Schs A, B, C, E and AMT.

Yes, Credit Karma supports all of those schedules for free with no income limits. However, given the issues I and others have shared so far in this thread, I would avoid Credit Karma unless you are comfortable and confident you can double-check the accuracy of their results before filing.

FreeTaxUSA/TaxHawk is another totally free option that supports all of the things you listed, and has been around for a while. I've used it the past couple of years with no complaints. No income limits there either.

Same here - FreeTaxUSA has been a pleasant surprise for me (though it doesn't include filing state taxes). They have some upsells available but not in your face.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Drifterrider on February 14, 2017, 06:54:35 AM
Does any of this "free" software allow you to file electronically for "free" without regards to AGI, MAGI and forms needed?  I use 1040, Schs A, B, C, E and AMT.

Yes, Credit Karma supports all of those schedules for free with no income limits. However, given the issues I and others have shared so far in this thread, I would avoid Credit Karma unless you are comfortable and confident you can double-check the accuracy of their results before filing.

FreeTaxUSA/TaxHawk is another totally free option that supports all of the things you listed, and has been around for a while. I've used it the past couple of years with no complaints. No income limits there either.

Same here - FreeTaxUSA has been a pleasant surprise for me (though it doesn't include filing state taxes). They have some upsells available but not in your face.

MD has its own free filing system.  A menu driven, fill in the blanks from your federal return type system.  I think it is very smart and probably saves the state (the people) a lot of money as opposed to hiring people to handle the work.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: boarder42 on February 14, 2017, 07:40:46 AM
Doesn't work for multiple states so won't work for me. I guess I could just file somewhere else for the extra state
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: tarheeldan on February 14, 2017, 10:32:44 AM
Foreign Tax Credit on foreign taxes paid through the etf (VT) I hold in taxable.

I ended up with the same issue on VXUS, plus I couldn't find in Credit Karma Tax where 1099-B box something or other is logged (characterizing capital gains as short-term or long term, with or without basis reporting). Gave a low confidence for the software's ability to dot the i's and cross the t's.

Used TaxAct again this year, $11.99 for Federal. Filed about an hour ago, return accepted immediately. Maybe next year!
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on February 14, 2017, 11:10:12 AM
Ended up filing with TurboTax Online.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: johnny847 on February 14, 2017, 11:14:48 AM
Does any of this "free" software allow you to file electronically for "free" without regards to AGI, MAGI and forms needed?  I use 1040, Schs A, B, C, E and AMT.

Yes, Credit Karma supports all of those schedules for free with no income limits. However, given the issues I and others have shared so far in this thread, I would avoid Credit Karma unless you are comfortable and confident you can double-check the accuracy of their results before filing.

FreeTaxUSA/TaxHawk is another totally free option that supports all of the things you listed, and has been around for a while. I've used it the past couple of years with no complaints. No income limits there either.

Same here - FreeTaxUSA has been a pleasant surprise for me (though it doesn't include filing state taxes). They have some upsells available but not in your face.

MD has its own free filing system.  A menu driven, fill in the blanks from your federal return type system.  I think it is very smart and probably saves the state (the people) a lot of money as opposed to hiring people to handle the work.

The federal government has that too.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on February 14, 2017, 01:03:44 PM
Tax act raised their prices too much this year but they have a free version that has everything but one form I need.  The form doesn not affect my payment amount. So I'll likely either paper file and just add the one form to the envelope or efile and paper file an amended return with nothing due. 
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: SpareChange on February 14, 2017, 11:42:12 PM
I ended up with the same issue on VXUS, plus I couldn't find in Credit Karma Tax where 1099-B box something or other is logged (characterizing capital gains as short-term or long term, with or without basis reporting). Gave a low confidence for the software's ability to dot the i's and cross the t's.

Used TaxAct again this year, $11.99 for Federal. Filed about an hour ago, return accepted immediately. Maybe next year!

Yeah, that's too bad. I ended up just using the IRS fillable forms over the weekend.   
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Aggie1999 on March 05, 2017, 11:39:28 AM
Seems like Credit Karma tax is nowhere near ready for prime time. It took my $3300 HSA contribution from my W2, box 12, code W and binned that as "Other Income". So it's dinging me for ~$1k in additional taxes. Don't see anyway to correct it. Also it doesn't ask me anything about my HSA forms (1099-SA, 5498-SA). Finally I can't seem to find how to get it to show the actual tax forms (1040, etc) at the end of the review process. All around not good.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: TomTX on March 05, 2017, 12:41:46 PM
Seems like Credit Karma tax is nowhere near ready for prime time. It took my $3300 HSA contribution from my W2, box 12, code W and binned that as "Other Income". So it's dinging me for ~$1k in additional taxes. Don't see anyway to correct it. Also it doesn't ask me anything about my HSA forms (1099-SA, 5498-SA). Finally I can't seem to find how to get it to show the actual tax forms (1040, etc) at the end of the review process. All around not good.

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/taxes/credit-karma-free-federal-and-state-tax-return/msg1428025/#msg1428025
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Aggie1999 on March 05, 2017, 01:40:33 PM
Seems like Credit Karma tax is nowhere near ready for prime time. It took my $3300 HSA contribution from my W2, box 12, code W and binned that as "Other Income". So it's dinging me for ~$1k in additional taxes. Don't see anyway to correct it. Also it doesn't ask me anything about my HSA forms (1099-SA, 5498-SA). Finally I can't seem to find how to get it to show the actual tax forms (1040, etc) at the end of the review process. All around not good.

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/taxes/credit-karma-free-federal-and-state-tax-return/msg1428025/#msg1428025

Thanks. Got it fixed. You would think if one's W2 had HSA contributions the wizard would walk through the applicable parts. Maybe it did and I didn't know what it was asking. After entering my 1099-SA I had to also tell it I had equal un-reimbursed distributions. Otherwise it wanted to count my HSA expenditures as other income. Very hokey.

On a brighter note it did correctly treat my excess HSA contribution from 2015 that I didn't fix in 2016 (i.e. charged me the 6% penalty for the remaining excess). FreeTaxUSA didn't do that.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Aggie1999 on March 05, 2017, 01:43:04 PM
Now for the last problem with Credit Karma Tax. For my capital gains it is showing equities sales as the cost basis being reported to the IRS. The 1099-B I received clearly shows cost basis was not reported to the IRS (these are old non-covered stocks I sold). I don't see where in Credit Karma Tax where to specify this. Any ideas?
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on March 05, 2017, 06:21:48 PM
I'm so torn, because I have a specific crappy form that nobody does for free, and I'm pissed at TaxAct, who I've previously used, for deceptive marketing and crappy customer service.  I did the math an if I can grab a slickdeal for $20 discount on TaxAct before April (and of course the discounts are always in March) I'l come out ahead on the interest I would have earned on my refund.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Aggie1999 on March 05, 2017, 10:14:12 PM
I'm so torn, because I have a specific crappy form that nobody does for free, and I'm pissed at TaxAct, who I've previously used, for deceptive marketing and crappy customer service.  I did the math an if I can grab a slickdeal for $20 discount on TaxAct before April (and of course the discounts are always in March) I'l come out ahead on the interest I would have earned on my refund.

What I ended up doing today was just doing the print option through Credit Karma. I used that as a basis for filling out the e-file forms directly through the IRS. Fixed myself what Credit Karma and FreeTaxUSA got wrong. Took a little longer but was pretty painless since I had most of the data already calculated for me. Also easier to understand the IRS forms when the data is already there and you can validate.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Spork on March 06, 2017, 10:57:04 AM
I'm so torn, because I have a specific crappy form that nobody does for free, and I'm pissed at TaxAct, who I've previously used, for deceptive marketing and crappy customer service.  I did the math an if I can grab a slickdeal for $20 discount on TaxAct before April (and of course the discounts are always in March) I'l come out ahead on the interest I would have earned on my refund.

Does H&R Block software not handle it?  I just noticed it was $20 on Amazon for the mid range "deluxe" package if you don't need state income tax.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on March 06, 2017, 11:15:01 AM
It probably does, but I need state
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: downtownshuter on March 22, 2017, 07:58:47 AM
I tried. Had a few sections where I wasn't clear how it was working and the refund was not adjusting as I expected it to as I entered new information. Also it required me to itemize a charitable deduction when I shouldn't have needed to (you only itemize if one specific item is $500 or more, not if your total donations are $500 or more) and then it double counted that deduction and I couldn't delete the itemized line. A few quirky things like that.

In the end it said I would get a refund of ~$2,850. Then I did everything myself and got a refund of $4,350. The worst thing is CK doesn't show you your forms or schedules so I can't track down the discrepancy. I contacted CK customer service about a couple of my issues, including whether or not I could see my actual Form 1040, and they gave me some stock answers that were not helpful. I was excited about this because I love CK for credit monitoring. Unfortunately this product isn't quite ready for prime time yet.

(I think the biggest difference is coming from CK's treatment of my HSA distribution. On CK's HSA form there was no section for "Qualified medical expenses paid using HSA distributions". So I believe they were taxing me on my distribution and adding the 20% penalty. But that doesn't totally resolve the discrepancy)
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: Aggie1999 on March 22, 2017, 09:01:25 AM
I tried. Had a few sections where I wasn't clear how it was working and the refund was not adjusting as I expected it to as I entered new information. Also it required me to itemize a charitable deduction when I shouldn't have needed to (you only itemize if one specific item is $500 or more, not if your total donations are $500 or more) and then it double counted that deduction and I couldn't delete the itemized line. A few quirky things like that.

In the end it said I would get a refund of ~$2,850. Then I did everything myself and got a refund of $4,350. The worst thing is CK doesn't show you your forms or schedules so I can't track down the discrepancy. I contacted CK customer service about a couple of my issues, including whether or not I could see my actual Form 1040, and they gave me some stock answers that were not helpful. I was excited about this because I love CK for credit monitoring. Unfortunately this product isn't quite ready for prime time yet.

(I think the biggest difference is coming from CK's treatment of my HSA distribution. On CK's HSA form there was no section for "Qualified medical expenses paid using HSA distributions". So I believe they were taxing me on my distribution and adding the 20% penalty. But that doesn't totally resolve the discrepancy)

Credit Karma certainly has a ways to go in easy of use. You can see the actual forms. Go to the end where you select "mail your forms". Then it will give you the actual PDF's filled out.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: dragoncar on March 24, 2017, 08:34:22 PM
There's a slickdeal for TaxAct premium: $10 fed+state.  Sold.  I'm just glad they got their heads out of their asses
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: phildonnia on February 13, 2019, 03:17:57 PM
I always seem to find bugs in free online tax programs.  Here's what I noted from Credit Karma in 2017:

1. Entering Section 1256 contracts gains from a K-1, the values were not entered on Form 6781. 
2. There was no place to enter losses from a trust on Schedule E
3. Passive Activity Losses from a PTP were not deducted, even though the PTP was "completely disposed".
4. There was no place to enter the Foreign tax credit from a 1099-DIV.

I haven't checked these or other things for 2018, so keep an eye out for stuff like this.

Not to pick on Credit Karma in particular; pretty much every program I've ever tried has had some kind of problem.  TaxAct, Freetax.com, and even the well-respected TurboTax have had little bugs that you can only find by going over the final forms yourself. 
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: phildonnia on February 13, 2019, 03:21:36 PM
I always file free, I've never been able to file electronically for free (fed.  my state has its own database).
You may like freefilefillableforms.com.    It's not much more than filling out forms by hand, but it electronically files them for free.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: 2Birds1Stone on February 13, 2019, 07:04:05 PM
@Philociraptor, I'm not the only one! I knew something was up with CK last year.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: phildonnia on February 14, 2019, 10:48:50 AM
... Completely relying on software for anything can end up badly.

I would trust tax prep programs much more if they just added one small feature: right click on any place on a form, and it will tell you where that number came from, or how it was calculated.
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: CareCPA on February 14, 2019, 08:51:31 PM
... Completely relying on software for anything can end up badly.

I would trust tax prep programs much more if they just added one small feature: right click on any place on a form, and it will tell you where that number came from, or how it was calculated.
That would be wonderful.
Even professional software has that limitation. You may already be aware of this...
Title: Re: Credit Karma: Free Federal and State Tax Return
Post by: appleshampooid on February 15, 2019, 12:10:57 PM
I tried Credit Karma this year - I was lucky in that one of the first forms I went to enter wasn't supported. I had a 1099-R from a Roth distribution that wasn't taxable (withdrawal of contribution), and on the 1099-R the "Taxable Amount Not Determined" box was checked (I'm assuming this is checked because they don't know your Roth basis, so you have to figure this out yourself on form 8606).

That checkbox was not supported in CreditKarma. Womp womp, on to the next provider on the list to try this year. So far I have been pretty happy with FreeTaxUSA, and I'm almost done (just need to get my 1099s from Vanguard). 

$0 for federal, no matter how complicated. $12.95 for State, and I got a coupon for 10% off that.