H&R Block Review 2022 – H&R Block Simplifies the Tax Return Process

Some links below are from our sponsors. Here’s how we make money.

Advertiser Disclosure: Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone. This article may contain links from our advertisers. For more information, please see our Advertising Policy.

H&R Block Review
The tax code is extremely complicated. But H&R Block makes the tax filing process easier with their best-in-class tax software. This H&R Block Review covers the pros and cons of using H&R Block Online or their desktop software to file your taxes this year.
Table of Contents
  1. Tax Preparation Software is Powerful & Accurate Enough for Most Tax Situations
  2. How to File Your Tax Return Online with H&R Block
    1. Starting Your Tax Return with H&R Block
    2. Importing W-2 and 1099 Forms Directly From Providers
    3. Start, Stop, & Save Your Progress
    4. Use Tax Calculators and Check Progress as You Go
    5. H&R Block Can Handle Changing Tax Situations
  3. H&R Block – File Federal Taxes Free Online
  4. H&R Block Online Versions:
    1. H&R Block Free Online
    2. H&R Block Deluxe
    3. H&R Block Premium
    4. H&R Block Self-Employed
  5. H&R Block Pros & Cons
  6. H&R Block – A Winning Tax Solution

H&R Block Review

H&R Block Logo
Product Name: H&R Block
Product Description: Tax Return Software
Ease of Use
Navigation
Features
Customer Service
Pricing

Summary

4.6

H&R Block is one of the most trusted tax services in the U.S. Their online software is among the highest-rated tax software programs. In addition, H&R Block also offers physical locations where you can meet with a live tax return professional. If you prefer to DIY, the online tax software program is the way to go, whether you have a simple tax return, or a more advanced return. Live help is also available for online users, with an additional fee.

I frequently go on record saying, “I don’t mind paying taxes—I just wish they weren’t so complicated!” And I mean every word of that. I understand the important role tax revenues play in our local, state, and national governments. But the actual process of completing our tax return gets more complicated each year. Did you know, for example, the US tax code is over 70,000 pages long, and growing each year? TaxFoundation.org puts the US tax code and regulations at over 10,000,000 words.

This is far too complicated for the average American taxpayer to keep up with. Thankfully, you don’t have to be an expert to do your taxes.

H&R Block - Taxes Won

While it’s a good idea to keep abreast of the major tax code changes each year, such as retirement account contribution limits (e.g. 401k and IRA), exemptions, deductions, and other major changes, you don’t need to be a tax expert to do your tax return. Because in all likelihood, you can leverage the expertise of others—either by

  • paying a tax professional to do them for you (more expensive), or
  • by using tax software to handle your own taxes (more economical, and the best solution for the average tax situation).

Tax Preparation Software is Powerful & Accurate Enough for Most Tax Situations

It impresses me that tax software providers such as H&R Block have been able to interpret the millions of words in the tax code and wrap them into a software program that is easy enough to use that it can be done online with a smartphone or tablet. And each year the process is refined further.

You should be able to use tax preparation software to quickly and accurately complete your tax return. There are some exceptions, of course. You may consider hiring a tax professional if you have a very specialized or complicated tax situation that requires very specific professional advice. But don’t resign yourself to paying hundreds of dollars to have a tax pro do your return until you look into your situation more closely. You may be able to use the help section or online Q&A from an online tax software website to complete your return on your own.

Even though the tax code becomes longer and more complex each year, the tax software solutions become more powerful and advanced. Even better, many companies, like H&R Block, offer a maximum refund guarantee and audit support.

How to File Your Tax Return Online with H&R Block

File Taxes Online

Filing a tax return with H&R Block is easy. Just visit their site, sign up, and start your return. You can begin your tax return for FREE. And depending on your needs, you may be able to complete and file your tax return for free. Some forms may require a more specialized version of H&R Block and may require payment. We’ll cover the different H&R Block versions later in the article.

Starting Your Tax Return with H&R Block

H&R Block uses an intuitive interface to walk you through the tax return process. They present you with a series of interview-style questions and calculate your return as you go. You can actually see how different actions change your tax return, such as exemptions, deductions, retirement contributions, and more.

Importing W-2 and 1099 Forms Directly From Providers

Depending on your situation, you may not even need to own a scanner. H&R Block makes it easy to automatically import your W-2 and 1099 forms from many different providers. Simply enter your employer’s EIN and the H&R Block online software will let your know if you can directly import your W-2. The process is similar for 1099 forms (again, available from select partners).

If your employer isn’t supported by the auto-import feature, you can simply take a picture of your W2 with your phone or tablet and import it directly into your tax return. Their software then pulls all the information directly from the photo and imports it into your tax return. This is much faster than manually typing, and eliminates possible errors when typing in your information.

Start, Stop, & Save Your Progress

You don’t have to finish your taxes in one session, even when filing online. I always try to gather all my forms in one place and get everything ready to go before I start my return. But it’s not uncommon for me to forget a form or have to look something up before I am able to complete my tax return. Thankfully, you can save your progress as you go, and pick up where you left off.

Use Tax Calculators and Check Progress as You Go

H&R Block has a great online tax calculator you can use without having to start a tax return. This is a great tool for getting a rough estimate of your tax obligation (or potential refund). If you do start a return with H&R Block, you will be able to see your progress as you go.

Try the H&R Block Tax Calculator. This free tool helps you easily estimate your refund or how much you’ll owe in taxes. Give the H&R Block Tax Calculator a Test Run.

H&R Block Can Handle Changing Tax Situations

Your tax situation this year may be different than it was the previous year. That’s OK. H&R Block can handle a variety of situations that may impact your tax return, such as getting married, having children, starting a new career, moving to a new state, serving in the military, and much more. The intuitive tax return process makes sure you don’t miss anything—even if it’s something you may not have been aware of.

H&R Block – File Federal Taxes Free Online

If you haven’t yet filed your taxes, I recommend checking out H&R Block’s online software. Their solution offers a variety of features, including the ability to file a simple federal return online for free. Here are some additional features and the H&R Block online versions.

H&R Block Online Offers the Following Features:

  • W2 snap & easy to import: Take a pic of your W2 from your smart device (new feature).
  • It’s easier than ever to switch to H&R Block Online – with drag and drop you can import a PDF of last year’s return from any other tax prep service.
  • Refund Reveal™ shows how and why your refund changed
  • Free EITC: EITC is now free on any H&R Block Online product
  • Mobile: Improved flow and usability on mobile apps

H&R Block Online Versions:

H&R Block offers several versions of its popular tax return software:

H&R Block Free Online

H&R Block Free Online includes the following features:

  • Simple returns
  • Students
  • Unemployment income
  • W-2 employees
  • Child Tax Credit (CTC)

H&R Block Online – FREE ONLINE – Best for new filers or simple tax returns

H&R Block Deluxe

H&R Block Deluxe includes the following features:

  • HSA contributors
  • Child and dependent care expenses
  • Itemize deductions

H&R Block Online – DELUXE – Best for homeowners and deductions

H&R Block Premium

H&R BlockPremium includes the following features:

  • Rental income
  • Investments
  • Sold cryptocurrency

H&R Block Online – PREMIUM – Best for investors

H&R Block Self-Employed

H&R Block Self-EMployed includes the following features:

  • Contractors, gig workers, and other self-employed work
  • Asset depreciation
  • Vehicle and home office expenses

H&R Block Online – SELF-EMPLOYED – Best for small business owners

H&R Block Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Easy to use interface with guided questions to make your tax return a breeze.
  • Additional support available
  • Easy to upload tax documents – just take a picture and upload
  • Competitive Pricing

Cons

  • Limited integrations with third-party programs
  • Some features and additional support cost extra

H&R Block – A Winning Tax Solution

Taxes can be complex. But filing your return doesn’t have to be difficult. You can leverage the years of experience and knowledge H&R Block brings to the table, and complete your tax return with relative ease. And the best part? Not only is your return guaranteed, but you can get started right now, for free.

Start Your Tax Return for Free with H&R Block

Read our complete tax guide here if you have any more questions or concerns about anything to do with taxes. 

H&R Block

  • Easy to use software
  • Max Refund Guarantee
  • Help from live tax agent available (additional fee)
Get Instant Access
FREE Weekly Updates! Enter your information to join our mailing list.

Posted In:

About Ryan Guina

Ryan Guina is the founder and editor of Cash Money Life. He is a writer, small business owner, and entrepreneur. He served over 6 years on active duty in the USAF and is a current member of the IL Air National Guard.

Ryan started Cash Money Life in 2007 after separating from active duty military service and has been writing about financial, small business, and military benefits topics since then. He also writes about military money topics and military and veterans benefits at The Military Wallet.

Ryan uses Personal Capital to track and manage his finances. Personal Capital is a free software program that allows him to track his net worth, balance his investment portfolio, track his income and expenses, and much more. You can open a free account here.

Reader Interactions

Comments

    Leave A Comment:

    Comments:

    About the comments on this site:

    These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

  1. Marc says

    What version of H&R Block tax software should I purchase to do my own personal taxes. I only have w-2 information and a completed schedule k-1 for a business that I am involved in as a partner. The business taxes were already completed – I just have a K-l with – what version shall I buy (the least expensive) to simply complete my personal taxes with this K-l schedule?

    Thanks

    • Ryan says

      Marc, The lowest priced version that supports a K-1 filing is the Deluxe version, which rings in at $29.95 for the online version and $44.95 for the CD-ROM version.

  2. fredct says

    I had major issues once with the other ‘big player’ in the tax software industry (not sure if I’ve shared the story on this blog). Combined with their horrible, dreadful, no-good, very bad support, it took weeks to straighten it out.

    Ever since then I discovered ‘Tax Act’, and I have been thrilled with their response & helpful support (“100% Made & Supported in the USA”). And the price is a downright steal compared to the big guys – all inclusive including a state return for $16.95, and you can find discounts over that if you search around too. They’re legit and very good.

    So explain where I’m coming from, taxes are not highly complicated (no business income, etc), but neither are they incredibly simple – I do have dividends, interest, cap gains, etc. TaxAct may not be *quite* as user friendly as the big guys, but it has improved every year. For instance, I’ve found some of their wording a tiny bit unclear sometimes, but I’ve reported it to them and they’ve fixed it for the next year. If you’re even just modestly comfortable doing your taxes, it should be more than sufficient. And you don’t pay until you print or file, so if you start it and don’t like it, you haven’t committed a dime.

    Just my recommendation. What have you got to lose besides 2/3rds of the cost?

    • Ryan says

      Most of the tax software programs out there allow users to fill out their information online without paying until they decide to either print or file. Thanks for bringing that up – I will add it to the article.

      I never had any problems with the other “big player.” I used them for years until this past year when I started using an accountant because my tax situation calls for sending in forms and estimated tax payments throughout the year (small business income, payroll taxes, etc.).

      That said, try out a few interfaces and software programs and use the one with which you are most comfortable or that offers the best bang for the buck. Thanks for sharing, Fred.

      • fredct says

        To explain, I used them for a couple years and never had a problem… until I discovered a bug in their state return. Yes, a flat out bug. It was adding up the numbers wrong (I didn’t understand why at the time, but it turned out that anything with a purchase date of ‘various’ was being categorized as short term, even if I’d told it it was long term. It worked fine on the federal return, but just messed up when doing it on the state).

        I emailed, they told me to use the chat. I chatted, they told me to call. I called, they suggested maybe I should try email. I used their forums, in hope to get the attention of someone working for them. I set up multiple ‘call backs’ (call me at such-and-such a time), and multiple times I got NO CALL AT ALL. Everyone I spoke to on the phone insisted (politely, but nonetheless insisted) that it must be my fault, or a problem with my install.

        After multiple weeks of trying to get *someone* to listen to me, I even went as far to contact the state department of revenue to tell them that a major piece of tax software was filing incorrect returns.

        Eventually, they released a bug fix report saying they had fixed such an issue. I don’t know how they actually discovered it, but no one ever acknowledged it to me. After tax season I sent them a feedback form explaining all this. All I wanted was something like “we’re sorry to hear about the difficulty you experienced submitting feedback and we’ll work to improve this process for our customers”. I never got anything. So I was done with them.

        I agree with you that the software is fine… so long as the software is fine. But if its not, may the heavens have mercy upon you when you try to convince them there’s an issue.

        By contrast, in first experience with TaxAct, I discovered a non-critical display issue… only on Firefox and only on a Mac. For such a minor thing, I expected little, but I sent them a note about it anywhere. A couple days later I got a response saying they’d told their development team. A couple days after that it was fixed. I was sold.

        • Ryan says

          I would be sold as well. That’s one of the great things about some of the smaller companies – less red tape and the agility to make improvements more quickly. Thanks for sharing your experience. 🙂

  3. Diana says

    Can I get by with the basic version if I took money out of an IRA early? How about if I sold stocks not in an IRA?

  4. Kim says

    Does anyone know if I could use the H&R Block (Deluxe edition)? I do have rental property that I own but not sure if the Deluxe edition would cover that?

    • Ryan says

      Diana, the Basic version may not cover all investment scenarios, but I’m not 100% certain. The good news is that you can start the Basic version online for free, and you can upgrade at any time. You don’t have to actually pay for anything until you print or file.

  5. tw says

    I don’t know how anyone can give this “New” software program a good review. Not only is the steps more confusing, there is less features. One of the major draw backs is that it doesn’t import finanicial info from major companies like TD Ameritrade. I just got off phone support with H&R Block and they confirmed that they did not reach an agreement with TD Ameritrade, for what every reason. I asked for a refund but they refused. I told them I was going to buy Turbo Tax and do this years return , so I would not have to enter all the stock info by hand. I would return to their software program next year, if they resolve this problem. (Which I know they will) They still refused to refund any part of the price of the software. I have used Tax Cut every since it hit the market. NO MORE. I am going to eat the cost of the H&R Block software and buy Turbo Tax tomorrow.

    • Ryan says

      Kim, based on the product descriptions, it looks like you will be better off going with the Premium version. However, if you start the process online, you can try the Deluxe edition and upgrade without losing your progress if you need to. Best of luck!

    • Shawn says

      Hi, You can go to TDAmeritrade, and under “History & Statements” go to “Tax Center” and there you can pick the “.txf” format that you can use to import to H&R Block. I was having the same problem too.

  6. Guy says

    If I were to buy the software from HR Block (deluxe), could my sister and I file seperate returns with the one software? Or do we each need to buy one? Thanks!

    • fredct says

      I’m not aware of any ‘renters credit’ in federal tax law, so I think you must be thinking of some state return? In which case I’d suggestion looking at the instructions for your state and determining whether he should be qualified or not. Then go back through the program and make sure it works out correctly.

  7. Joe says

    I’ve been a user since TaxCut first came out. Up until now I thought it was a fine product, with increasing functionality and ease of use. But I recently discovered that if you have your tax return data password-protected (highly recommended — you never know when you’re going to get hacked, virus’ed, lose your laptop or whatever), that the password is there in your data file in CLEAR TEXT. All someone needs to do to open your TaxCut/AtHome return is to browse your data file with NotePad or similar simple browser program and search for “psswd=”. Voila. There’s your password just a clear as you’d like. Now they can open your return. (FYI: your data file can be found by doing a file search in Windows and search for the name of your return followed by “.Txx”, where xx=09 for 2009 for instance). I reported this problem to them on April 10 via their chat system. It seemed like news to them, but I find it hard to believe they didn’t know this, that they never actually looked at their own data file format. So, I say steer away from this product. What else didn’t they test, or didn’t care about security-wise? This is incredibly unprofessional. Shame on their programmers.

  8. diana says

    I cannot install the Premium. Keep getting an error message. Looked online and tried the “fix”…still nothing. Is anyone having the same issues?

  9. Bill says

    Same problem as James, Dave, and Diana. Not happy with the changes to this program and I have been a loyal customer since the 1990s. Went for the Premium version this year and now find that it is all online and no download. I prefer to download and run and not from “cloud”. Not enough info up front is making an unhappy customer. Not pleased.

  10. Dick says

    I am a do it yourselfer. I have created a .txf file to import capital gains into taxcut. However, I have been unsuccessful in importing schedule A charitable deductions. I tried the following for example and it did not work.
    V036
    A My Stocks
    D 12/31/2012
    ^
    TD
    N280
    C1
    L1
    Pmy charity
    D03/15/2012
    $-500
    ^

    What is the exact format that taxcut will recognize as valid 2012 data? Thanks

  11. Shawn says

    It comes with 5 Federal efile returns and 1 State efile return. They say you can do your taxes with it and your neighbors if you like (it said that on the box). So yes you can do that with HR block. You can also just print it out and send it in too.

  12. Shawn says

    The 1 state efile return is for the software version that lets you do “state” taxes too. I personally was using the Premium home version for self employed.

  13. Ryan says

    Thanks for the update, Shawn. I used the online version for the review and I believe the version I had was limited to one return, and that was what I based my answer on.

Disclaimer: The content on this site is for informational and entertainment purposes only and is not professional financial advice. References to third party products, rates, and offers may change without notice. Please visit the referenced site for current information. We may receive compensation through affiliate or advertising relationships from products mentioned on this site. However, we do not accept compensation for positive reviews; all reviews on this site represent the opinions of the author. Privacy Policy

Editorial Disclosure: This content is not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the bank advertiser, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. This site may be compensated through the bank advertiser Affiliate Program.