Like many other DIY tax return companies, Jackson Hewitt makes filing a return relatively simple by asking a series of interview-style questions. But maybe too simple?
While you have the option of letting the software guide you through all the sections, you can also jump straight to the sections you want to complete and skip the ones you think don’t apply to you. This is useful for people with some knowledge of their tax situation and the income, deductions, and credits that apply to them. But it might cause less experienced users to skip important sections.
Jackson Hewitt clients can have the software guide them through all sections of their tax return or jump directly to the areas that apply to them.
If you never know how to answer a question or if it applies to you, embedded links are included in many interview forms. Click on any of them to display a short explanation and the forms and a pop-up screen will contain more information.
You can also click the Help menu at the top of the screen to search the Jackson Hewitt Knowledge Base for an answer, connect to customer support via live chat or email, or reach them by phone at 800 -234-1010. Just keep in mind that customer support can usually answer product questions or help with technical difficulties – they don’t provide tax advice.
This may be another limitation of using Jackson Hewitt. While some of its competitors offer online clients the option to upgrade for advice or have their tax return reviewed by a tax professional, that’s not an option with Jackson Hewitt — at least not under the online program.
If you want the help of a tax professional, you will either need to visit a Jackson Hewitt office or use their “Tax Pro From Home” service, which connects you with a tax professional and allows you to upload your tax documents. . The fees for this service depend on your tax situation and you receive a quote when you are put in touch with a professional.
Unfortunately, if you start recording DIY software and get stuck, you can’t trust it to a professional at any time. You will need to sign up for a MyJH account, which is separate from the DIY online filing platform, and start over.
As part of my review, I went through the process of preparing three sample returns. Here’s how long it took me to get from start to repository for each:
- Single Taxpayer, No Dependents, W-2 Income and Student Loan Interest Deduction: 10 minutes
- Married couple filing jointly, one dependent, two W-2s, child tax credit, and child and dependent care credit: 13 minutes
- Single taxpayer, no dependents, self-employment earnings, estimated federal and state tax payments: 15 minutes