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Best Small Business Tax Software in 2022

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Preparing your business taxes doesn’t have to be painful or cost thousands of dollars. Several small business tax software programs can streamline the process by walking you through interview-style questions and filling out the right forms.

Here are our picks for the best small business tax preparation software.

5 best small business tax software programs

Each software program listed below can help business owners file their federal and state tax returns quickly and accurately.

Bookkeeping serviceBest forStarting price
H&R BlockOverall$195 + $44.99 per state
TurboTaxQuickbooks users$119 + $49 per state
TaxActS corps and C corps$94.95 + $54.95 per state
TaxSlayerSole proprietors$59.95 + $39.95 per state
FreeTax USABudget usersFree federal filing, $14.99 per state

Rates accurate as of Aug. 16, 2022.

H&R Block: Best overall

ProsCons

  On-demand, unlimited help from a tax professional

  Can import business income and expenses directly from apps like Uber and Wave

  Import data from W-2s and 1099s by taking a photo on your phone

  DIY options only available for sole proprietors, not corporations or partnerships

  H&R Block tax professionals aren’t necessarily CPAs or Enrolled Agents (EAs)

  Difficult to import data if you do your small business bookkeeping in QuickBooks 

Plans and pricing

  • Self-employed (sole proprietor): Starting at $195 for do-it-yourself or $220 to work with a tax pro, plus $44.99 per state return
  • S Corp, C Corp & partnership: Starting at $260 to work with a tax pro

Features

  • Get help from an H&R Block tax pro virtually by sharing your screen and communicating through chat and video
  • Import business income and expenses directly from apps like Wave and Uber
  • Take a picture with your phone to import tax forms, including W-2s and 1099s

Who it’s best for

H&R Block is a good overall option for small businesses — especially for sole proprietors who want to try filing independently, but also want the peace of mind of knowing they can still get help from a professional. If you get stuck along the way or have a question, Online Assistance allows you to get unlimited help from an H&R Block-trained tax professional.

TurboTax: Best for QuickBooks Users

ProsCons

  User-friendly interface

  Automatically imports business income and expenses from QuickBooks Self-Employed

  Massive searchable database of helpful articles and user-submitted questions 

  Only available for sole proprietors — corporations, partnerships and multimember LLCs will need to use TurboTax Business, which is only available via CD or download

  Can get expensive, especially if you want help from a tax expert

Plans and pricing

  • Self-employed (sole proprietor): $119 for federal, plus $49 per state return
  • TurboTax Live Self-Employed: $199 for federal, plus $54 per state return
  • S Corp/C Corp/Partnerships: $170 federal, plus $55 per state return

Features

  • Get walked through a series of interview-style questions to help you claim every deduction available to you
  • Import your 1099-NEC forms by taking a picture with your smartphone
  • Easily import business income and expenses from QuickBooks Self-Employed, Uber, Lyft and other apps
  • Receive help preparing and printing W-2s and 1099s for employees and independent contractors, even if you don’t use QuickBooks payroll
  • Upgrade to TurboTax Live to get tax advice and a final review from a tax expert or Full Service to have a tax expert or CPA prepare your return for you

Who it’s best for

TurboTax Self-Employed is a no-brainer choice for users of QuickBooks Self-Employed, another Intuit product. The software automatically imports your business income and expenses from QuickBooks, saving you the time you’d otherwise need to spend entering data manually in another small business tax software program.

TaxAct: Best for S corps and C corps

ProsCons

  Year-round support with estimated quarterly tax payments

  Deduction Maximizer™ helps freelancers and independent contractors find common tax deductions

  Expensive if you need to file multiple state returns 

  Difficult to navigate, with limited on-screen help and search results that aren’t always targeted

Plans and pricing

  • Self-employed (sole proprietor): $94.95 for federal, plus $54.95 per state return
  • S Corp/C Corp/partnerships: $124.95 for federal, plus $54.95 per state return (can bundle individual tax return filing for $199.95, which includes state returns)

Features

  • You can start your return for free and only pay when you’re ready to file
  • Free support included with all products
  • Bookmark a section or question to easily return to it later

Who it’s best for

TaxAct is one of the least expensive options for filing S-corp or C-corp or partnership returns among the solutions we reviewed. And unlike other small business tax software options, you don’t have to pay extra for help if you get stuck — all TaxAct products include Xpert Assist, which offers unlimited help from CPAs and EAs.

TaxSlayer: Best for sole proprietors

ProsCons

  Free email and phone support included with all products

  Searchable knowledge base with answers to common questions

  Doesn’t support corporate or partnership returns

  Limited importing options

Plans and pricing

  • Self-employed (sole proprietor): $59.95 for federal, plus $39.95 per state return

Features

  • Includes IRS audit defense and representation for three years
  • Sends reminders to ensure you don’t forget to make quarterly estimated tax payments

Who it’s best for

TaxSlayer is a good option for sole proprietors: In fact, it doesn’t support tax returns for other types of business entities, such as Forms 1120 or 1120-S for corporations or Form 1065 for partnerships and multimember LLCs. Free email and phone support are included, and the self-employed version also offers access to Ask a Tax Pro, where you can talk to a tax professional with small business tax expertise.

FreeTax USA: Best for budget users

ProsCons

  Free filing of federal income tax returns

  Supports a wide range of common tax forms

  No option to import 1099-NECs or other tax documents for quicker data entry

  Doesn’t support corporate or partnership returns

Plans and pricing

  • Self-employed (sole proprietor): $0 for federal return, $14.99 per state return

Upgrade to the Deluxe edition for $6.99 to get priority support via live chat, unlimited amended returns and help responding to IRS notices.

Features

  • Free federal filing and state returns cost just $14.99 each
  • Supports many common self-employed tax situations, including self-employed health insurance, the home office deduction and vehicle expenses
  • Import prior year returns from TurboTax, H&R Block or TaxAct

Who it’s best for

FreeTaxUSA offers just about unbeatable pricing on federal returns — it’s free, although they do charge for state returns. The trade-off is that support is limited: Don’t expect on-demand support unless you pay $6.99 to upgrade to the Deluxe version. You’ll have to ask questions through email or FreeTaxUSA’s account message center; according to the website, they typically respond to questions within 30 minutes.

How to choose a tax software program

Here are some things to consider when choosing a tax software program for your small business taxes:

  • Cost. While some online tax preparation programs offer free filing, it’s usually only available to taxpayers with W-2 income who claim the standard deduction and a limited number of other tax deductions or credits. Business owners typically need additional features only included in higher-tier packages. When comparing costs, remember that most small business tax software programs charge an additional fee to file state income tax returns.
  • Form availability. The tax forms you’ll need to file will depend on your business structure and the income, deductions and tax credits you claim. Some small business tax software programs might not support all of the tax forms you need, so make sure they supply the required forms before you get started.
  • Ease of use. Small business taxes are complex, and few small business owners are experts in the tax code. Some software packages do a better job than others of walking you through the process in plain language and providing definitions and answers to common tax questions.
  • Accuracy guarantee. When you’re paying a software provider to file your taxes, you want to ensure your return is correct. Look for a software provider that offers an accuracy guarantee covering any IRS penalties stemming from calculation errors. Be sure to read the fine print to understand what the guarantee includes. For example, TaxAct caps its guarantee at $100,000 and only includes calculation errors made by the software — penalties due to user error aren’t covered.
  • Customer reviews: Reading reviews from other users can help you decide whether the software is right for you. Some reliable sources of reviews include the Better Business Bureau, Best Buy and Amazon.

Methodology

To appear on our list of best small business tax software programs, we took the following factors into account: the overall cost of the program, integrations with accounting programs or other third party software programs, access to professional tax support and form availability.

Tax software or tax preparers for small businesses?

While small business owners can prepare their tax returns, that doesn’t mean they should. Small business taxes can be complex, and unless you’re familiar with the rules for claiming tax deductions and credits, you could make a mistake on your return that leads to owing back taxes, interest and penalties later on.

If you’re not confident in your ability to file a complete and accurate return, consider working with a CPA, EA or another qualified tax professional. Someone experienced in filing returns for business owners in your industry can ensure that you properly deduct expenses and claim tax credits.

Frequently asked questions

The best tax software for you and your business will depend on your needs and budget. If you want the option to turn your tax return over to a pro if you get stuck, H&R Block or TurboTax Self-Employed might be the best option for you. On the other hand, if affordability is your top priority, FreeTaxUSA might be a better fit.

TurboTax is a good option for small business owners — especially if they’re already using QuickBooks for their small business bookkeeping. Both solutions are Intuit products, so you can automatically import your business income and expenses from QuickBooks into TurboTax and save yourself the hassle of re-entering everything manually.

Yes, small business owners can file their own taxes online. However, if you don’t feel comfortable interpreting tax rules, you might want to turn tax return preparation over to a professional.

No, QuickBooks doesn’t offer tax filing. However, Intuit, QuickBooks’ parent company, also makes TurboTax.

That will depend on how your business is structured. Sole proprietors and single-member LLCs file their business taxes on Schedule C, which gets filed along with their individual tax returns (Form 1040). Other business structures, including corporations, partnerships and multi-member LLCs, file separate tax returns for the business.

Tax filing deadlines depend on your business structure.

Returns for sole proprietors and calendar-year C corporations are generally due on April 15. Returns for partnerships, multi-member LLCs and S corporations are due on March 15.

Business owners are also generally required to make quarterly estimated tax payments. Those payments are due on April 15, June 15, Sept. 15 and Jan. 15 of the following tax year.

If any tax deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, the due date shifts to the following business day. There are also special rules for fiscal year taxpayers, which you can find in Chapter 2 of IRS Publication 505.

 

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