eSmart Tax Logo
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LAST UPDATED: March 19th, 2021
A product of the Liberty Tax Service company, eSmart Tax software is associated with high-quality ratings. Forbes magazine has consistently pointed to Liberty Tax Services as a top franchise and has garnered a positive reputation in general. eSmart tax has a mission of making tax preparation as simple and affordable as possible. Their slogan is "Accurate, Secure tax prep. Fast. Easy. Smart."

Top Ranked Companies


The Good

  • Thorough guarantees
  • Improved performance
  • Import features
  • Storefront access
  • Customer support
eSmart Tax has a number of filing solutions for simple returns, families, investors, or business owners. Their website and products are verified with IRS e-file, GoDaddy, and TRUSTe

Thorough Guarantees

The good thing about eSmart Tax's guarantees is that it is thorough and solid. The initial price is locked the day one signs up. No matter how long one takes to finish filing, the initial price will stay constant. The company promises 100% accuracy and is willing to go out of their way for customer satisfaction. The best thing about eSmart Tax's guarantee is that they promise the biggest refund in comparison to other companies, or else they will "eat the tax preparation fees."

Improved Performance

The software has been improved for the 2014 tax year, and that includes an all-new interface. This has updated the forms and introduced a much simpler interview process that walks even a novice filer through the entire process without any hassles, difficulties, or confusion. The help options send the individual to detailed menus where complete answers are readily and easily found. There are also many tools connected with this software including accuracy tools, deduction tools, and learning materials.

Import Features

Not only is the software easy to use, but it also allows the individual to import their previous year's return from a long list of possible locations. These include some of the top names such as FreeTaxUSA, H&R Block, TurboTax, TaxACT, and more.

Storefront Access

Those who are using the online option can also get in touch with a Liberty Tax professional if they fear that they are using the eSmart system incorrectly, or if they have concerns and questions.

Customer Support

All of these things are extremely handy and useful, and those with simple to relatively complicated tax issues will find that they can enjoy a much simpler experience than they might have had in the past with tax prep software. Contact Information - you can get ahold of eSmart the following ways:

The Bad

  • Federal and State Price
  • Deduction Discovery
  • For Basic Use
  • Tax Calculators
  • No Mobile App

Federal and State Price

eSmart Tax offers 4 tax products, including Free, Basic, Deluxe, and Premium.
  • Free - The Free product is best for simple returns, and costs $0
  • Basic - This plan is ideal for families, and costs $14.95
  • Deluxe - The Deluxe plan is best for investors, and costs $19.95
  • Premium - Best for business owners, this plan costs $34.95
State tax filings are an additional $29.95 with any above package you choose.

Deduction Discovery

Many people decide to use software for tax prep because they are not experts at the different steps and sections. The inclusion of discovery tools is one of the main reasons for people continuing to use software, but eSmart does not include any "deduction discovery" resources in the software. This is unusual when compared to other brands, and it is something that can cause those with complex taxes to miss out on many possible deductions against their income.

For Basic Use

Some also complain that the eSmart software is so basic that it skips some of the obvious necessities. There is no "life events" section that helps someone to see how their tax situation might have changed from the previous year. For example, marriage, children, employment, and housing. These are things that impact taxes, and without knowing this, you can miss out on some deductions or make serious errors in calculation.

Tax Calculators

There are also no calculators to use for retirement, taxation, or depreciation.

No Mobile App

eSmart also does not have a mobile app and does not offer any refund bonuses. Companies like H&R Block and TurboTax offer special incentives to their customers such as receiving a bonus on their refund if they accept it in the form of a gift card.

The Bottom Line

Like a long list of other web-based tax preparation programs, eSmart does seem to have some obvious gaps in its overall design. Most of these are related to complex tax issues, and that is perhaps the reason for their absence. After all, not everyone is going to require the use of IRA tools, resources to use when purchasing stocks, real estate tools, etc. The ability to import previous years of data can be useful for those with complex tax issues because the software does recognize all of the forms and supports them as the returns are generated. This means you can use a costlier tax filing from a previous year as a sort of template for eSmart's easier and more affordable packages. Overall, eSmart is an average choice. Some users might find that eSmart fits their needs and others might not. They can definitely improve pricing and include other important features they will make a customer's experience more pleasant.
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Angela Edgerton Balcer Norman, OK

I was left with a bitter taste after dealing with this online company. I filed my federal income tax return for 2015 with them, no problems. I then,separately, filed my state income tax returns, which I paid for, yet they were never received by my state's tax commission. In the weeks that followed, I emailed Customer Support 3 times (2/22/16 and 2 on 3/03/16) to try to find out why the state return had not been received by my state. I received no response and so on 3/08/16, I went online to e-chat with someone live. This worked out great, my refund is due back from within 7-10 business days. But nearly a week later, I receive an email response from the same representative I e-chatted with the previous weeks. This response came from one of the emails I sent on 3/03/2016. Eleven days after I sent the email, and Not kidding, it says, "Hello, Angela, If you had contacted us this could have been resolved earlier." 11 days after I sent the email and 6 days after I thought we had resolved the issue. I have yet to receive my refund, but 3/22/16 is the 10th business day, so we're not there yet. I do have a sneaking suspicion that I may simply be out that money. Lesson learned!

7 years ago