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Canadian Income Tax Software

  • Adam Douglas
  • app

Every year, that time comes where we are faced with having to file our income tax return. We may not all enjoy doing it, but it’s one of those things we all have to get done. This year I was prompted to look into tax software again by questions from my son about what to do. For my son, this is his first year ever submitting and my 25th tax return. So off I went in search of desktop or online software that will handle doing income taxes returns for the best of us at a reasonable price while still having control over my data, privacy and security as best I can accomplish. A part of me wishes that if we have to do an income tax return, why is the Canadian Government not directly providing software to get it done? Something I may never have an answer for.

The Quest

With a search engine, I began my quest to find software that would preferably run on my desktop Linux operating system natively or, at the minimum, run using Wine. I dream of a day that the software is offer open source, but as far as I know that doesn’t exist at this point in time. Most income tax software offered for the desktop is available on Windows, with a few offering macOS. In recent years, I’ve started noticing software being offered to do it online via a website and eventually on Android and iOS. Anyway, the search results I was getting resulted in me not finding much and was starting to feel that I would be forced to have to use an online solution or use Windows. This didn’t make me happy, but I thought fine, maybe I just give in and starting filing via an online solution. Well I started looking into a few companies that offered online solutions by reading their terms of use and privacy polices. Well, let’s just say that what I found was scary to read and in a lot of cases there was next to nothing stating what their practices are or how my data was going to be handled. So with that, I was determined to completely forget about using an online solution. Heck, even using Android and iOS based software is dangerous in itself. However, I do understand, some just do not have the luxury of choice. Since I was not finding a solution, I decided to go through each certified tax software listed on the Government of Canada website. I learned there are quite a few offering free solutions and how this industry seems to love having extremely outdated website designs. The unfortunate part about this list software is that it doesn’t state which one works on Linux. In the end I believe I found a few a solution plus a few backup options just in case.

Solutions

After spending quite some time going through all the offered software listed, I settled on using “myTaxExpress”. The main reason is it works on Linux natively! Also, it appears to look easy to use with an auto-fill feature to assist those not overly familiar with taxes and that the software seems to allow for growth if one’s fiances get more complex. Since I’m new to this software, I will have to come back and update this article as I learn more. Just in case, I’ve decided potentially on using the following below if this solution doesn’t work. They all appear to be promising alternatives, but I must add other than “myTaxExpress” the rest do not work natively on Linux.

The solutions I’ve listed may require purchasing a license in order to submit your tax return. Submitting the return is only free when one fits within the free criteria.

  • myTaxExpress (Linux, macOS, Windows) by Acadia Solutions Corp.

    Read myTaxExpress knowledge base article on how to install and run on Linux.

  • FutureTax (Windows) by Future Corp.
  • StudioTax (macOS, Windows) by BHOK It Consulting
  • EachTax (online) by XInfo Technology Inc.

Good luck to everyone in this year’s income tax return journey. Make the best of it!

Have any suggestions or wish to provide your experience, please contact me.

I’m publishing this as part of 100 Days To Offload. You can join in yourself by visiting 100DaysToOffload.com.

- modified
    • Add reference link, tax return
    • Add knowledge base article link