Intuit, Maker of Turbo Tax, Opposes Return-Free Tax Filing

I’ve yet to file my taxes for 2012, but reading this piece in Pro Publica is making me shake my head. The United States could have free filing, but Intuit, the maker of TurboTax, has been lobbying the government to oppose the measure:

Intuit has spent about $11.5 million on federal lobbying in the past five years — more than Apple or Amazon. Although the lobbying spans a range of issues, Intuit’sdisclosures pointedly note that the company “opposes IRS government tax preparation.”

The disclosures show that Intuit as recently as 2011 lobbied on two bills, both of which died, that would have allowed many taxpayers to file pre-filled returns for free. The company also lobbied on bills in 2007 and 2011 that would have barred the Treasury Department, which includes the IRS, from initiating return-free filing.

Bottom line is that the way we file taxes now, we are more likely to make clerical errors on our returns. Why is the “return free” filing available in other countries and working well?

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