fuck disingenuous, predatory "free file" state tax services!

Aka, “File your taxes for free, but get buttfucked by a clumsy interface that’s designed to trick you into overpaying!”

Tax forms are ridiculous and convoluted to begin with, so I always E-file or I-File or whatever cutesy-fartsy names the government and websites use for this service. Since I make it far cheaper and easier on everyone involved by doing this, I think it should be free. Luckily, it is - in IL and VA (the two states that I lived last year), I can file state returns for free through the state’s department of revenue website.

Of course, they’ve intentionally designed this service to be as confusing, misleading, convoluted, and downright predatory as possible in order to trick taxpayers into fucking up and overpaying. The first clue was when they asked me to input the amount of “Virginia Tax” that I payed. Excuse me? There is no “Virginia Tax.” Are you asking for my “State Income Tax, aka. box 17?” THEN FUCKING SAY SO, YOU MOTHERFUCKING PIECE OF SHIT. You are intentionally trying to trick me by not providing clear, concise lucid, and direct instructions for EXACTLY what info from what box I should input, which is ESSENTIAL in the world of taxes. When I E-filed Federal, they made it TRIPLY clear EXACTLY which info from which numbered box on which form should go into the dialogue box.

So, FUCK YOU to Virginia’s I-file system in particular, with your ridiculous, misleading, ambiguous language!

Heh. Virginia’s tax forms were a total assfuck back when I had to fill them out. I’m not surprised their e-forms are no better.

My perpetual ire is reserved for the state of Ohio, though. When I lived there (I don’t know if it’s changed), they cheerfully and oh so generously gave people who filed jointly a “joint filing tax credit.” Then you did the math, and realized that the credit often did NOT offset the savings that you reaped by filing separately. Fuckers. It’s because of trapdoors like this that I always do paper tax forms.

I know someone who worked as a programmer on contract back in the early nineties. One of his jobs was to program state tax filing software for one of the large tax-prep companies. He had no tax law or accounting experience. The accountants involved with the job had no programming experience. Results were less than ideal.