When it comes to filing taxes, low cost and simplicity are the name of the game. On both fronts, the eSmart Tax software misses the mark in our opinion in 2019.
Based on an extensive review of the eSmart Tax platform and other tax filing services, we are marking pass on eSmart Tax in 2019.
Our biggest concerns with eSmart Tax? It comes with high prices, but we found the software to be difficult and clunky to use. Below you’ll see why we don't recommend eSmart Tax this year.
Instead, check out our list of the Best Tax Software Options For Your Situation.
- Self-guided navigation and few import options
- Higher pricing than other competitors that may be easier to use
- Promo Code for 20% Off: ESTCJ20
Tax filing software packages tend to come in one of two varieties- self-guided or interview style (the most robust software offers both varieties). eSmart Tax only offers the self-guided option. It has a menu at the top of the screen which offers users options to navigate from income to deductions, etc.
Each menu option brings up a new screen which is essentially a long list of options. Users must read through the list and select the options that pertain to them. Depending on the complexity of your situation, you may end up having to read through long lists on every single menu.
As with other self-guided tax software options, less experienced filers may miss an important section leading to too high or low of withholdings.
However, eSmart Tax crams a lot of information onto each page which makes increases the likelihood that a user will miss some critical entry.
eSmartTax Ease Of Use
eSmart Tax proved to be one of the more difficult to use software services this year. It’s built in “calculators” were not tax specific calculators, but calculators with limited function.
Worse, it was nearly impossible to clear out the calculator if you made a calculation error. The software did do some calculations for the users (such as standard linear depreciation for rental properties). However, these calculations were few and far between. Most of the time, users have to enter their own information.
Combining the navigation with the insufficient calculators makes eSmart Tax difficult to use in our opinion.
eSmartTax Knowledge Articles
Instead of knowledge articles, eSmart Tax has “common questions” with their responses embedded on the right hand side of the screen.
Most of the questions have to do with how to use the software rather than what certain types of tax jargon mean. Overall, the user instruction articles can help you navigate the software (which is important), but the articles don’t offer the real insights that filers may need.
eSmartTax Pricing And Plans
eSmart Tax has four pricing tiers. Each tier includes tech support, chat support, and audit assistance. You must purchase “enhanced audit assistance” for $29.99 if you want a Liberty Tax Service professional to provide in person help with an audit.
It’s important to note that people who need to file a Schedule C (self-employed business include side hustlers) have to purchase the Deluxe or Premium edition and landlords and investors who bought or sold stock must purchase the top tier Premium edition.
Also, eSmart Tax does NOT offer any truly free filing options - unlike TurboTax, H&R Block, Credit Karma, and others who at least offer a basic free version.
Make sure you use the eSmart Tax promo code ESTCJ20 to get 20% off your tax filing.
W2 Income Only
Itemizers, people with interest accounts
Investors, Landlords, Anyone who sold a home
eSmartTax delivers a decent software solution, and helpful support features. However, it’s a high price to pay for a mediocre software.