Tax Hawk Review – Simple and Affordable
There are lots of online tax preparation software products, and some are expensive and some are quite a bargain. Tax Hawk falls into the latter category and offers one of the more affordable options on the market for taxpayers who want to file their returns without the benefit of a professional tax preparer. Tax Hawk makes it easy to file both Federal and state returns, and Tax Hawk will allow you to file your Federal return for free, with state returns priced at a modest $12.95. Read on for our full Tax Hawk review.
Tax Hawk Overview
As with most tax preparation products, Tax Hawk offers their software via an online user interface. While some products, such as TurboTax, are downloadable or installable from a CD, Tax Hawk is a strictly-online product. There are advantages to this, particularly in that you won’t have to worry about whether the software is up to date. Tax Hawk can update their software at any time, so you’ll always have the most current version of the product. Unlike other software programs, Tax Hawk has one version of the software for all users. You won’t have to buy an upgrade if you have rental income or if you have a small business or trade in stocks, for instance. One product does it all. You simply register, sign in and begin answering questions.
The basic free product will allow you to file electronically, file for an extension, print your return, back up your return for future use, and receive your refund by direct deposit. There is a Tax Hawk Deluxe Edition, which costs $4.95. This version is the same as the free one, but you also receive Audit Assist, where Tax Hawk will help you should you be audited, priority tech support, should you have any problems, and unlimited amended returns. While amended returns are possible using the Tax Hawk free version, they do cost an additional $9.95, making the Tax Hawk Deluxe Edition a relative bargain. In addition, you can have a printed version of your return mailed to you for an additional fee, and an option to receive a bound version of your return is also available.
Tax Hawk makes it easy to save your information from this year’s return for use next year, where you can simply have your information automatically fill in the forms so you don’t have to repeat entering data that isn’t likely to change. Their Refund Maximizer makes it easy to find all of the credits and deductions to which you’re entitled without a need to upgrade to another edition.
State returns are available through Tax Hawk; they cost $12.95, which is among the least expensive state options we’ve seen. We’ve noticed that lots of companies are competitive regarding Federal returns, but often have significantly higher prices for state returns. Tax Hawk has a very low price for state returns when compared with other providers.
Unlike many tax preparation products, Tax Hawk has just one program that covers everyone. Their software supports nearly all types of income, including investments, rental property, self-employment and more. If you bought a home or added a child to your family, you won’t have a problem; Tax Hawk will cover that, too. For a free product, it’s quite comprehensive. Their software is encrypted using 256 bit SSL encryption, so your data is safe on their servers.
There are a few people who will not be able to file using Tax Hawk, and this would include those taxpayers who have income from foreign employers or those who have a foreign address, as well as nonresident aliens. They will have to use another product, and nonresident aliens should probably consider using Glacier Tax Prep instead.
While Tax Hawk is a comprehensive product, and one that can cover most any scenario that you will encounter, it’s not perfect and cannot account for all possible situations. Tax Hawk is familiar with most common deductions that the majority of taxpayers will use and it can accommodate you if you have something unusual to declare. What it cannot do is know everything; it cannot know every possible scenario under which you might be entitled to an income tax deduction. That’s not a flaw in the software; all tax software can only do what you tell it to do. Federal tax code is complex and cumbersome and there are hundreds or even thousands of ways to take legal tax deductions that could reduce your tax liability, but Tax Hawk can only do something about those obscure deductions if you know about them yourself.
What that means is that while Tax Hawk is good software, it’s not the only resource you’re going to need if you want to save the most money you possibly can on your income tax. For that, you need access to the information that’s really important – finding out about the many legal ways that you could be saving money on your taxes yet you aren’t using. It’s not about you, specifically; most Americans are probably paying more in taxes than they need to. But the task of finding out what you can and cannot deduct is a huge one, and it’s beyond the capabilities of most taxpayers, as it simply involves a tremendous amount of time.
Fortunately, there is a way to keep abreast of changes to the tax code and all of the many ways that you can use the tax code to your advantage and thus save hundreds or even thousands of dollars on your taxes. You can find the information and understand it, too, as it’s not going to be written in legalese or tax talk. It’s going to be written in simple, down to Earth English that anyone can understand. You’ll find out how you can save money this year, next year and every year from now on. And you won’t have to pay too much in taxes anymore. Once you find out about all of the ways you can save, you can plug that information into Tax Hawk and you’ll be on your way to getting the refund that you deserve.