In exchange for operating a quasi-monopoly on filing taxes electronically within the U.S., the companies that develop e-file software were required by Congress to create the “Free File Alliance” website, which allows American citizens to electronically file their tax forms at no charge. The forms look just like the printed tax forms, so it’s basically a series of PDFs with “filleable form” functionality.
However, for several years now, the forms have been broken. For instance, most of “The 99%” who have children fill out the Schedule EIC, a tax credit for families with children. But the blanks to fill out the names of your children are unaligned so the names are read as scrambled; further, inexplicably, simply tabbing to the next blank is inadequate also. So, if the EIC is filed using their system, the IRS will automatically return the efile-d forms as improperly filled out.
Similarly, self-employed citizens are unable to report income using the Schedule C-EZ form, because the “Do the Math” function — which is supposed to perform simple calculations on single pages — simply doesn’t function. You cannot enter the amounts yourself, only the “Do the Math” function will. But it’s broken. The IRS automatically returns the forms as an error, because the “total” blank must be filled out, but due to the broken form, can only be left empty.
I have contacted the lawyers who are at the Free File Alliance’s office, and tech support at the IRS, who have reported that they have contacted the various agencies within that ad-hoc organzation, to no avail. For several years now.
Reasonable people are left to conclude that the errors were either inserted, or left in, purposely, in order to pay lip service to Congress’ order, and force Americans to use paid and/or privately-branded e-filing systems.
View Link [freefilefillableforms.com]