H and R Block’s Budget Challenge: Teaching Kids Financial Basics

This April, H and R Block will be celebrating National Financial Literacy Month by awarding more than $1.3 million in scholarships to H and R Block Budget Challenge participants. The H and R Block Budget Challenge is a free online tool available to teachers that exposes teenagers to the financial pressures of an adult through a simulated experience, kind of like a game. It is offered year round as part of the company’s Dollars & Sense financial literacy platform.

H and R Block photo
Photo by vthokiejd

A national survey recently discovered that 42 percent of teenagers do not describe themselves as “financially fit.” H And R Block’s own research indicates that 58 percent of teenagers fear that their finances will be worse than those of their parents. Teens want to learn this information, but financial literacy instruction is only a high school graduation requirement in seven states, according to the Council for Economic Education.

H and R Block is stepping into the void by offering its Budget Challenge to 155,000 high school students across all 50 states this school year. This represents a substantial increase over the approximately 100,000 students that participated last year. The scholarships will be awarded to the best performers in the month of April.

Even the students that do not win a scholarship will benefit from the program, however. More than 95 percent of the teachers that participate in the program agree that it is an effective tool for teaching kids financial basics. Between the high cost of college and the crippling debt usually incurred to pay for it, financial education is vital to today’s youth.

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TurboTax Super Bowl Ads, Confirms Doing Taxes Made Simple

TurboTax is releasing seven teaser advertisements ahead of its 30-second game-day spot to demonstrate the importance of technology to people, and the positive effect of technology on doing taxes. The leader in tax software doesn’t have much to prove is seeking additional subscribers to its popular program.

TurboTax Super Bowl Ads
Photo by IntelFreePress

The company is relying on the expertise from various fields, including astrophysicist Nobel laureate George Smoot and theoretical physicists Dr. S. James Gates and Michio Kaku, to demonstrate the effectiveness of Turbo Tax software. A pretty unique way to go about creating a SuperBowl Ad. Not sure that everyone will know who these accomplished individuals are when they see the ads.

Intuit’s Consumer Tax Groups’ Senior Vice President of Marketing has said it was the first time they were working on solving the uncertainty and self-doubt that many people have regarding their taxes by showing how the software delivers an effortless and innovative solution so they can be sure their taxes are done appropriately. The campaign, which was developed in partnership with the Wieden + Kennedy ad agency, involves radio, digital, social media, and the Super Spots.

The Brand has so far released three Super Bowl teaser ads and has plans to release three more this month. In addition to its teaser ads and the 30-second spot, TurboTax has indicated that the campaign will also include two Spanish-language ads.

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TurboTax 2014 Offers Money Saving Tips For 2015

When it is time to use TurboTax 2014 to complete your taxes for the past year, you may want to consider a few tips that can save you money in the coming year. Planning early in the year makes it easier to reach your financial goals by the end of the year. Since you are already running the numbers with Turbo Tax 2014, you have records that can show you where to make cuts for the next year.

turbotax

Review Your W-4

Changes in withholding laws affect the money your employer must withhold from each paycheck. If you find you owe money at the end of the year using Turbotax 2014, you may want to increase the withholding. If you are getting a big refund each year, decrease the amount withheld to increase your monthly budget.

Winterize Your Home

Turbo Tax 2014 can help you to find special tax credits for this type of action. They reduce the cost of projects that provide long term savings to you as a homeowner.

Look at Your Cellular Plan

Many people are paying hundreds of dollars monthly for their cellphones. That two year contract that gives you the latest smart phone can be costly. Today, there are providers offering great plans with no contract. Some are as little as $25 per month and will allow you to bring your existing phone.

Turbo Tax 2014 offers some great tips for ensuring you take qualifying deductions on your tax returns. In addition, the software makes tips that can help you to save even more for the following year.

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Intuit TurboTax And EHealth Help Americans Enroll In Health Insurance Plans

Open enrollment for health insurance plans is about to begin again. For that reason, eHealth, Inc. and Intuit have teamed up to keep consumers informed about changes in the program. Both companies have released information on how consumers can get enrolled in the right insurance plan and do it quickly. These companies have shared a partnership since 2013 when they first released a software product for health insurance selection. Without a doubt, consumers need to heed their words if they plan on using HealthCare.org.

For the past year, TurboTax free and paid users have been asked to answer whether they have health coverage or not when they file their income tax returns. Individuals that lack coverage are then directed to the TurboTax Health website where they can get purchasing assistance. This site allows individuals to compare their coverage options and enroll in a plan through eHealth, an easy process that is now mandated. Before the enrollment period ends, consumers should acquire coverage for themselves for small a small fine on their taxes.

English: U.S. Health Insurance Status (Under 65)
English: U.S. Health Insurance Status (Under 65) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Those who fail to enroll in a qualified insurance plan will face tax penalties without an exemption. For now, that penalty costs $325 per adult or two percent of a household’s income. The IRS charges the higher of the two fees, though. Not all households can afford to pay such fines and penalties each year. And the fines increase as the program is longer in effect. Thus its easier to pay the penalty at first but harder in later years when it becomes harder for congress to reverse the damage of Obamacare.

Currently, eHealth offers a variety of services for consumers in conjunction with Intuit. Consumers can use the company’s comparison platform to find coverage costs as we have discussed. They can then sign up for coverage through the joint enrollment plan. At that point, consumers will find themselves covered as far as the law is concerned. Paying for a plan comes at a later stage after you are┬áregistered and counted.

In the end, health insurance coverage is incredibly important and that is why most employers have offered health insurance to full-time workers. Many Americans remain uncovered, and they will face penalties without ample coverage when they file their taxes. Intuit and eHealth are providing a valuable service for American taxpayers and those in need of health insurance. As always, TurboTax offers a free tax preparation option to help taxpayers save money on their taxes and now its even better with the added health insurance options.

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Turbo Tax Offers No-Cost Filing

Turbo-Tax Absolute Zero, Your No-Cost Tax Return:

Zero Federal, Zero State, Zero costs to file your 2014 taxes. This will affect about Sixty Million Americans. You can call it a major tax break. Starting tomorrow sixty million Americans will be able to prepare the taxes and file them at zero cost. Yes, that’s right – TOTALLY FREE! Not one penny. It’s due to the fact that Intuit TurboTax has lifted the tax preparation burden off your backs. This is truly a good value service.

This will be the first time ever that Americans have been able to file both the federal 1040A or the 1040EZ returns, along with state returns, for a total cost of ZERO dollars. This comes from the Turbo Tax Federal ‘Free Edition’. Turbo Tax users are also not going to have to worry about complying with new health care laws or how to claim the earned income credit. Using Absolute Zero makes it all easy and simple, as well as cheap (No-Cost).

Turbo Tax is a leader in the tax preparation industry, and prepares more overall federal tax returns than all other providers. They know how crucial it is for 60% of all taxpayers who have simple returns and who fie early on in the year, to receive their refunds as quickly as possible. To a lot of people, this annual tax refund (which averages out at around $2,700 nationwide), is the largest check they will get all year.

Turbo Tax know how hard Americans work for their money. Intuit understands the importance and the urgency of getting every dollar Americans deserve. This is according to Sasan Goodarzi, Intuit’s Consumer Tax Group General Manager, “This is the reason we are offering free filing to millions of our American citizens. We have taken the tax preparation burden off the citizen’s backs, so they can use their money for other things. The people at Turbo Tax are on your side.”

Anyone who wants to get a jump on filing their returns, can now file with Turbo Tax and have their return securely held and then submitted once the IRS starts to process its e-filed returns, which happens on January 20th.

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