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I'm a little confused - we got an e-mail from ATX talking about their new Advanced Calculation and Compliance. Where the module will include calculations of education credits, taxes paid for other states, and the two year comparison for C, E, and F's and some more.

Are they saying that the 2020 software will no longer do that stuff if we don't pay the extra $499? Our software always has done those things in the past... 

Any thoughts?

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Those calculations left the Total Tax Office a few years ago and went to their enhanced version. It is super expensive, so I was just figuring everything out myself. It was not a big deal, but could take time on returns with several states. When they offered it the add on this year, I went ahead and ordered it, since it does save time and was not several thousand dollars. I think that they were trying to steer everyone to their expensive version, but it was too expensive for my practice.

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19 hours ago, JackieB said:

I'm a little confused - we got an e-mail from ATX talking about their new Advanced Calculation and Compliance. Where the module will include calculations of education credits, taxes paid for other states, and the two year comparison for C, E, and F's and some more.

Are they saying that the 2020 software will no longer do that stuff if we don't pay the extra $499? Our software always has done those things in the past... 

Any thoughts?

Actually, the things they have on there are not included in Max.   Normal Education Credits are in MAX, but the optimization of them is not.   The 2 year comparison will show the net income from Sch C, E or F, but not the details of the forms.   The other states tax credits do not automatically populate in MAX.   To me, with my clients, there is not enough of these returns to justify the extra expense of the functionality.   I only have 3 clients with other state tax credits.   I can print out the prior year C, E or F if I really need to drill into it.   I have 1 client with a child in college and a 529 plan in place.   If I did more multi-state returns or had a younger, wealthier client base, then these things might make sense.

Just my opinion.

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  • 2 weeks later...
2 hours ago, ETax847 said:

I just received the offer email today.  I cant justify spending an extra $500 for this extra functionality.  Why they dont include these features in the normal version is beyond me.  

I agree...they absolutely should include it as part of the MAX calculations.  But then they wouldn't be able to make an additional $500 for each preparer who purchases it.   💲💲

I ended making the purchase since I have several clients who work in NYC but live in NJ or PA.  I also have several who have kids in college.  We'll see how useful it is this year and that will determine if I renew with the feature or not.  Time will tell.  

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2 hours ago, ETax847 said:

Why they dont include these features in the normal version is beyond me.  

It's a way to increase the price, without actually increasing the price, by making it voluntary. Personally, I think it's worth it. Even if you only do 250 returns, it only costs you 2 bucks per return.

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1 hour ago, Yardley CPA said:

I agree...they absolutely should include it as part of the MAX calculations.  But then they wouldn't be able to make an additional $500 for each preparer who purchases it.   💲💲

I ended making the purchase since I have several clients who work in NYC but live in NJ or PA.  I also have several who have kids in college.  We'll see how useful it is this year and that will determine if I renew with the feature or not.  Time will tell.  

@Yardley CPAWould you be so kind as to provide a review of the enhancements after you get a chance to try them out?

Tom
Modesto, CA

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  • 5 months later...

If they added these advanced calculations into the base software and increased the price, everyone would complain.

With ATX Advantage, or now it seems you can buy just the advanced calculations without going all the way to Advantage, this allows consumers choice. Those who don't need them can get their software for less. Those who do want them pay more. Seems like a good approach to me. This is not an uncommon approach in the software industry.

I upgraded to Advantage a few years ago and it is an important tool for my business.

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I have used MAX for several years now, after many years of using Total Tax Office.  I always felt the advanced calculations should be part of the program regardless as to what version you have.  With that said, they have the luxury of offering it for an additional fee and that's exactly what they've done.  I purchased the $499 package for this year.  I still have to intervene and and make selections within the advanced calc screens.  It's not something you can simply allow to flow through the return without checking to make sure its correct (like you need to do with any other aspect of the program.)  It's a nice option but I'm not sure it's worth the additional $499. 

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