H&R Block At Home's Basic service can prepare and e-file basic tax returns

Prepare and e-file simple federal and state returns with this basic online service from a well-known name in taxes.

With so many online tax services, it's hard to know which one to trust to file your federal or state taxes. For those who want a familiar name, H&R Block has been preparing federal and state taxes for clients for decades, so it didn't start from scratch when it launched an online tax service, H&R Block At Home. As with Block's traditional service, it offers different levels of service for different needs. H&R Block At Home Basic costs just under $20, so it's near the low end of fee-based online tax prep services. But you can try it for free to see if it's what you're looking for. H&R Block At Home Basic guarantees its math and will reimburse you if you incur IRS penalties (plus interest) and also that you'll receive the maximum possible return (if you're getting one).

H&R Block At Home's Web site has the look and feel of a big e-commerce site, with various packages you can buy or click on for more information, including a free option for very simple returns. A sidebar offers resources to help you decide, including product comparison, FAQ, and a Help Me Choose feature. There's also a handy list of Quick Links to check your e-file and refund status, estimate your taxes, and obtain expert help and advice. We clicked on the Basic package, which has everything the free option has (including one free federal e-filing) plus the ability to import previous tax returns, an Accuracy Review, and step-by-step guidance for preparing and filing your taxes.

H&R Block At Home lets you log in with an existing account, create a new account, or simply run through the entire process without signing in. We chose the Basic service's Start for Free option, and it proved to be excellent practice for the actual task. Though we didn't actually file taxes with H&R Block At Home Basic, it certainly seems like a reliable, no-hassle way to e-file simple tax returns.

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