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Tubotax and FAFSA -- It is now available-

menloparkmommenloparkmom Registered User Posts: 11,864 Senior Member
thanks to C-dog, a new poster for posting this news on the parents cafe today. I thought it was important to cross post it here. And thanks to the parents [ Thumper1!] who contacted Intuit last year, and to the Turbotax VP, Bob Meighan VP, who responded to their suggestions and made this happen!

"Someone was mentioning that there was a pilot for TurboTax FAFSA, it is now open and can be accessed at: http://fafsa.intuit.com/"

Post edited by menloparkmom on

Replies to: Tubotax and FAFSA -- It is now available-

  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Registered User Posts: 15,558 Senior Member
    I am not willing to pay for it though! Once I have done my tax returns it only takes me seconds to enter the income information into FAFSA. not going to pay intuit $25 to do what I can do so easily myself.
  • 3bm1033bm103 Registered User Posts: 4,209 Senior Member
    I looked at the link and two things strike me immediately. The first is that unless you want to enter the information manually, you must first use turbo tax. I assume you must also first pay for turbo tax. If you're going to enter manually, you may as well do it on the real form.

    Secondly, you then print and mail the form.

    I would personally prefer to fill it out online and send it electronically. Am I missing something?
  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 61,922 Senior Member
    Well...*I* wrote Turbo tax several times about this very issue. They did a beta pilot of this program this year. I was disappointed that I wasn't selected for the pilot. If you use tax prep software (and yes...you pay for that...but you would pay for it anyway), it sure would be nice if it auto-entered all of the fields on the FAFSA that come right off of the tax returns (which is a good number of them). I'm hoping it helps some of the folks who have such difficulty completing these forms (read all of the posed questions by parents and students on this forum). While I agree...the FAFSA is free so are tax returns...and many of us pay for tax prep software to complete those...for some, it might be worth a small amount of money to have it auto-filled with the information.

    I wonder if there is some provision for "free filing" the FAFSA for those who free file their taxes.

    Agreed with others...there shoudl be an option for filing this FAFSA online.
  • bluebayoubluebayou Registered User Posts: 24,089 Senior Member
    Agreed with others...there shoudl be an option for filing this FAFSA online.

    If I understand the point correctly, the feds would never allow it. Don't forget that fafsa is in reality a combination of two tax returns: the students' and the parents'. And, it has to be (electronically) signed by both, even if the student is a non-filer.

    There is no way that TTax can handle this issue.
  • sueinphillysueinphilly Registered User Posts: 4,207 Senior Member
    taxactonline will give you a FREE form at the end showing what you have put on your taxes that will transfer over to the FASFA (AGI, Earned income, untaxed income....)
  • SamKSamK Registered User Posts: 445 Member
    My S and I both did our taxes with TurboTax this year, so I decided to take TurboTax FAFSA for a spin...

    After I completed entering the data that was not imported from our returns, I got a PDF link to retrieve my FAFSA, together with this message:
    It's your lucky day! We won't be charging you any money for using our product, but we'd really like to know what you think.
  • 3bm1033bm103 Registered User Posts: 4,209 Senior Member
    Well.............tell then you think it would be nice if you could export it to the FAFSA website and file it online.
  • patsmompatsmom Registered User Posts: 4,112 Senior Member
    I tried it out, too. It will only import your tax info if you used TurboTax Online, not if you use the regular software. I didn't find it any easier to use than the FAFSA online form. I had hoped that it would have more detailed explanations of what was being asked for in some of the questions but it didn't. I'm very disappointed in it.
  • SamKSamK Registered User Posts: 445 Member
    I told them that it would be nice to file electronically (but of course that would require a bigger effort from FAFSA than from TurboTax, so I would not hold my breath for that to happen.) I also told them I would not pay $25 for it, but it might help them attract/retain tax return customers if it were free. I forgot to ask them to calculate and display the EFC. No excuse for them not do do so after collecting all the data.

    The import feature worked for me, and the interview format was comfortable and familiar. It's still pretty no-frills, but I would expect that at least the help features will be improved in the future.
  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Registered User Posts: 15,558 Senior Member
    No excuse for them not do do so after collecting all the data.
    There is a lot more to it than gathering the data - it then goes through a formula to calculate the EFC.

    I am not sure i see the point really of this whole idea really unless it is a 'hold your hand and explain every question in great detail' program. The tax and income part is all already done for our taxes anyway. The part that takes us longest to gather for FAFSA is the asset information. Not because we have a vast amount in $ terms but we have a little bit here, a little bit there, that little bit in savings bonds etc. That information is not reported on our tax returns and i still have to gather it and calculate current values myself. Don't really see the point of gathering it all, entering it all on a turbo tax, then having them spit it out again and me having to reenter it on FAFSA.

    But our situation is pretty simple really - maybe it would be more useful to those with complicated finances such as self employed, small businesses etc.
  • IndyPatIndyPat Registered User Posts: 8 New Member
    Great line extension by TurboTax. If those that use TurboTax would like for the organization of the information then this is great. For many, numbers and tax issues are not in their normal realm of activity so this may be a great application.

    DOE may take the route of the IRS and allow third parties to file for families.
  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 61,922 Senior Member
    There is no way that TTax can handle this issue.

    Why can't this be filed online? Turbotax filed ALL of our taxes ONLINE. It's just another form sent to a different URL that has a different combination of information. Heck...TT also efiled our state tax returns...with info from other sources.

    The FAFSA is a government form and so is the tax return. Sorry...I can't see why this FAFSA from TT can't be filed online.
  • SamKSamK Registered User Posts: 445 Member
    I can't see why this FAFSA from TT can't be filed online.

    Before TT can file the FAFSA online, the DOE must establish an online filing process.

    Originally, the IRS established an online filing process. At that time, taxpayers could file their federal return electronically, but had to mail in their state returns. Then the different states established similar processes and now taxpayers can file their state returns online as well. Now it's the DOE's turn. I would not be surprised if TT starts lobbying the DOE to do just that.
  • Columbia_StudentColumbia_Student Registered User Posts: 5,046 Senior Member
    I would pay $25. I found it stressful filling out the FAFSA form. I'm glad I read most people feel the same.
This discussion has been closed.