Open Source Tax Software Pages
Just in case you were under the mistaken impression that TaxGeek was the only Open Source tax product out there,
we've provided links to other similar projects that may serve your needs better, depending on your abilities, etc...
- TaxCalculator (Excel) - This is,
to my knowledge, the oldest open source tax calculator around, with releases dating back to
tax year 1996. It is in the form of an Excel 5.0 worksheet which looks almost exactly like the
tax forms. Most calculations are done automatically and there is support for all of the
major supporting forms and schedules that are supported by TaxGeek. The only drawback is
that it doesn't write to PDF or e-File.
- Open Tax Solver - This is currently the
big name in the OpenSource community. Last year they added a graphical front end so that
if you don't like working from the command line, you can still use the program. Fewer
major schedules are supported than for TaxGeek. However, they do support several state
income tax forms! Also, the output is written directly to the IRS fillable PDF files so it
looks very nice. As with TaxGeek, no e-Filing is supported.
- Autotax - This is a neat project that
dispenses with anything other than the PDF forms. Rather, the author, George Pauly, has
IRS fill-in forms so that the calculations are automatically done as you go. Unfortunately
the IRS will never do this itself because then it will be seen as competing with big
business. This project is new this year, and as such, is still somewhat limited in its
functionality but it may ultimately be the best way to do things in the end as it will
be completely platform independent.
- Tax Code Software Foundation - Richard Braman,
a Florida based accountant is the leader of this project. While it is promising in that
when a product is out the door, it will be CPA certified and probably will pass PATS (a
validation test suite offered by the IRS), no code has been produced to this date. We are
actively watching this project for signs of development!
Other Free Filing
Most other free filing listed by the IRS is contingent upon your adjusted gross income being below $52,000 or some
such number that changes on a yearly basis. If you would like professional tax advice and filing
regardless of your income or age, see the AARP. Yes, that's the organization formerly known as the
American Association of Retired Persons.
From the source:
From February 1 through April 15th each year, the AARP Tax-Aide program
offers free one-on-one counselling, as well as assistance on the telephone and
internet to help individuals prepare basic tax forms, including the 1040, 1040A,
1040EZ and other standard schedules.