CNET Editors' review
H&R Block Free for your 2013 taxes stands out among online tax prep services because the site is streamlined and the service's step-by-step process makes preparing your taxes easy. Plus, you can file your income taxes online for free (state taxes, too, for a fee). H&R Block Free includes free advice from tax experts and free in-person support if you're audited, and it guarantees you the lowest tax bill or largest return, depending on what you've got coming to you.
We visited H&R Block's store-like Web portal and clicked the Free edition. The next step is to create or log in to your HRB account or continue without creating one. Creating an account is easy, and you'll need one to file, but we do like the option to check things out without sharing data. Next, we could import previous filing data, even from other programs like TurboTax. A lot of information and help is available at each step of the process, including Common Questions and Resources and a new Search tool. Tabs access Federal and State taxes. Topics like What's Changed let you update your status by checking a few boxes. Calculators are available, but the site does the math for you.
As we expected, H&R Block 2013 Free proved easy to understand and use. If you own a home or have interest income, one of H&R Block's premium services will save you much more on your tax bill than its affordable sticker price. But for young adults, first-time filers, and others with basic tax returns, H&R Block's Free online service seems like a great place to start.
From HRB Digital:
H&R Block At Home 2013 Free Edition makes filing easy for self-employed individuals and rental property owners with live tax advice, advanced tax calculations. It guarantees accurate calculations or we'll reimburse resulting IRS penalties and interest charges (limits apply). The free audit support and audit representation is part of our guarantee. Our audit support helps you understand why you're being audited and what kind of response to prepare. If you need representation, we can communicate on your behalf through an audit proceeding. The Free edition contains tax Prep, printing and e-file for free and one free session of live tax advice via chat or email1.
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