Jackson Hewitt is a popular tax preparation service that helps taxpayers with a wide range of issues, from simple tax situations that can be completed using Form 1040A or 1040EZ, to more complicated situations that involve business income, investments, and itemized deductions.
Let’s see what more Jackson Hewitt Tax has to offer.
How It Works
Jackson Hewitt offers interview-style tax preparation. You’ll find this style really helpful if you’re not so familiar with the tax preparation process. The questions are framed in a way that’s easy to understand, so it’s not difficult to determine whether a tax form applies you to you.
The good thing is that if you enter a space accidentally, you can easily go back using a back button. If you don’t like the interview-style approach, you can opt for the more advanced self-guided preparation, where you are allowed to enter information that applies to your tax situation.
Jackson Hewitt allows you to jump between various sections freely. Namely, you don’t have to complete your return step-by-step from start to finish.
This promotes flexibility, especially if you are more comfortable with some elements of a complicated tax return than others or are waiting on a particular form to fill out a section. Note that the system will prompt you to complete them should you try to submit your return without filling out the sections.
It’s also worth noting that if you try to do something that’s not supported by your current plan, Jackson Hewitt will automatically bump you up into the relevant plan without warning.
To avoid any inconveniences, it’s important to thoroughly review what each package has to offer before you start preparing your return and choose the appropriate package based on your situation.
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Jackson Hewitt offers a variety of features geared to enhance accuracy and efficiency during tax return preparation and filing. Some of the most important features include:
When you file your tax return with Jackson Hewitt, you don’t have to worry about the IRS tax penalties or interest. Jackson Hewitt commits to reimburse any penalty or interest charged imposed on you due to a Jackson Hewitt miscalculation or software error.
Payment and Tax Refund Options
Jackson Hewitt gives you several options to pay for their services and to receive your tax refund if applicable:
- You can pay for services using a debit card, credit card, or your refund.
- You can receive your tax refund through direct deposit into your bank account, a paper check sent in the mail, or an American Express Serve Card.
You can also request for a refund advance if you need your tax refund quickly. The advance is given in the form of a loan that is equivalent to your expected refund amount.
In-Store Tax Filing
If you don’t like the idea of filing your tax return online, or you prefer working with a tax expert in person, you can make a trip to one of the Jackson Hewitt’s 6,000 physical locations spread across the country.
You’ll get assistance from tax professionals who understand the tax code and new tax laws. These professionals will also assess your tax situation and help you get the maximum refund possible. This tax-filing option includes both state and federal preparation as well as audit assistance.
Jackson Hewitt boasts a support database that contains a wide range of topics geared toward helping you learn about Jackson Hewitt’s online tax filing system as well as tax preparation in general. This content is not user-generated but created by Jackson Hewitt staff.
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Jackson Hewitt offers three distinct plans designed to meet the specific needs of different taxpayers.
If you have a simple tax situation that can be completed using IRS Form 1040EZ, this would be an ideal package for you. It will cost you absolutely nothing to file both federal and state tax returns.
If you want to claim the Earned Income Tax credit, you have dependents, want to itemize your deductions, or you need to claim over $1,500 in interest income, this plan won’t work for you. With the Free Edition, you get access to the following features:
- W-2 Import – You don’t need to waste time entering your information manually.
- Past Year’s Return Importing – You can only import returns filed with Jackson Hewitt service. You’re not allowed to import returns from competitor’s platforms.
- Email and Phone Support – You can call customer service during business hours. You can email customer service at any time, but you’ll have to wait for up to 24 hours to get a response for emails sent outside of business hours.
The $29.99 Package
If your tax situation is a little bit complicated, in that you have dependents and need to claim the Earned Income Tax credit or you need to report student loan interest, this plan will work well for you.
It will cost you $36.95 for each state filing. In addition to the features offered in the Free Edition, you also get to enjoy the following features:
- Student loan interest deduction
- Earned income and child tax credit – Besides being able to file Schedule EIC and claim the Earned Income Tax credit, you can also claim other dependent care expenses.
- Retirement Income – This plan allows you to claim Social Security payments, disbursements from IRA and 401(k) accounts, and other forms of retirement income.
The $49.99 Plan
If your income exceeds $100,000, you are self-employed, have a small business, or have other investments like real estate this is the appropriate package for you. It will cost you $49.99 to file your federal return and $36.95 for each state return.
In addition to the features found in the lower-priced packages, you’ll also enjoy support for the following situations:
- Itemized deductions
- Investment and interest income support
- Capital gains or losses claim
- Business income and deductions
- Rental property income
- Farming incoming
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Jackson Hewitt Competitors
There is an increasing number of solid tax filing solutions. These are a few of the top alternatives to Jackson Hewitt:
- Free Tax USA – Just like the name says, Free Tax USA offers free tax filing options.
- H&R Block – Maybe the most well known tax filing service, H&R Block is a great option for online or in person filing.
- Liberty Tax – Famous for their spinning signs and statue of liberty dressed employees, Liberty Tax offers a good online solution.
Jackson Hewitt’s packages are priced as follows:
- Free version – $0 for both federal and state filing
- The $29.99 version – $29.99 for federal filing and $36.95 for each state return
- The $49.99 version – $49.99 for federal filing and $36.95 for each state return
Pros of Jackson Hewitt Tax Services
- The free edition is, indeed, completely free
- Access to over 6,000 Jackson Hewitt branches across the U.S.
- Most features are mobile-friendly
- You can freely move between sections
- Phone support
- Limited capabilities for lower-priced versions
- Help database misses some essential information
- Limited customer support options
- Can be bumped to pricier packages without warning
- Prior-year imports from competitor platforms not supported
If you are overwhelmed by your return, you can always visit Jackson Hewitt offices for professional assistance—that’s where Jackson Hewitt beats its competitors.
While you’ll pay more for the service, that expense is certainly worth it. You’ll not only minimize errors but also have extra peace of mind.
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