Congress Is About to Ban the Government From Offering Free Online Tax Filing. Thank TurboTax.
In one of its provisions, the bill makes it illegal for the IRS to create its own online system of tax filing. Companies like Intuit, the maker of TurboTax, and H&R Block have lobbied for years to block the IRS from creating such a system. If the tax agency created its own program, which would be similar to programs other developed countries have, it would threaten the industry’s profits.
Having just done my taxes, and paying Intuit a hundred bucks every year to e-file my federal and state taxes, this story makes me even more wound up than usual. And yes, I could manually do them myself, but I’d rather spend that time doing other things I deem more important.
It just grinds my gears when private companies push and lobby to keep the status quo, keeping entities state, federal, or local from progressing and providing appropriate help for the public. This law only benefits share holders of companies that provide tax software. It in no way can be contorted to be “in the best interest of the public good”.