Article | 1:36 min read

Which is Right for You? Electronic Tax System vs. An Accountant

Budget and Save

Taxes can be intimidating, regardless if you’re a seasoned taxpayer or if this is your first time. If you want help with your taxes, there are typically two options:

man with glasses looking at a computer
  1. Using an electronic filing service claiming to save you money and time on your taxes
  2. Hiring a professional tax accountant

Both have their merits, but which one is right for you?

Have an understanding of your situation

Knowing what your needs are for filing your tax returns will help in deciding which service to use. Your income is one of the most important factors. Per the IRS, if your total taxable income in a year is less than $73,000, you may qualify to use a free service called “Free-File”.

TurboTax offers a free service for those filing their taxes using a 1040ez form. Again, there are some restrictions as to who can file this form. Both of these options allow you to file your tax returns without costing you money.


There are a number of deductions you can claim to lower your taxable income. These can be charitable donations, or contributions to a retirement account like an IRA or 401k. Other common deductions include children, education expenses, and job expenses.

Using an electronic service may help you find more deductions than filing yourself, but you might miss some of the less well known deductions. In addition, the way the deductions are described may be confusing, which may result in you not taking a deduction you qualify for because the wording wasn't clear. A good tax accountant who completely understands your financial situation may be able to find deductions an electronic service can't.

How complex are your taxes?

The complexity of your situation may determine whether or not you should use an accountant. If you plan to file as single and don't have kids, your best bet may be to file using an electronic service. On the other hand, if you're married, have three kids, are paying for their college education, have multiple sources of income, and have a business, it may be worth the extra cost of hiring an accountant.


The information provided in these articles is intended for informational purposes only. It is not to be construed as the opinion of Central Bancompany, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and does not imply endorsement or support of any of the mentioned information, products, services, or providers. All information presented is without any representation, guaranty, or warranty regarding the accuracy, relevance, or completeness of the information.