This year, OLT.com has improved navigation and interface, and it has kept its prices low. Despite continuous improvements, the software still proves confusing for novices and experts alike.
If you’re an experienced filer who wants an audit assistance guarantee at a low cost, OLT may be the right software for you. However, even with the low prices, OLT.com does not make our list of software to use in 2021.
Here’s what you need to know about filing your return with OLT.com
See how OLT.com also compares to our top tax filing software options.
- Improved navigation but still bare bones
- Low price for audit assistance and support
- Pricing is one of the lowest for all tax forms included
OLT.com Review Video
Is It Really Free?
OLT.com allows all filers to file Federal taxes for free. However, the state return costs $9.95. The software is competitively priced for filers with more complex tax filing situations.
What’s New In 2021?
Of course, OLT.com updated the software for 2021. For example, it now allows users to claim the Rebate Recovery Credit if the user didn’t receive the appropriate stimulus check in March.
It also updated its user interface to have better icons to direct users to the right part of the software. The navigation is still horrible. Users need to know a lot about taxes to enter the right information. But new icons help a bit.
OLT.com Pricing And Plans
OLT.com has two pricing tiers. The Free tier includes all major forms for filing, but it doesn’t come with tech support. The Premium edition comes with live chat and phone technical support and a guarantee of audit assistance. This offer and these prices have been consistent for several years.
Both plans give you access to all the major tax filing schedules, and you can import your data from the previous year.
Anyone comfortable filing their own taxes very manually
If you want customer service and audit support
This year, OLT.com has improved its navigation. The software has a semi-guided form of navigation. It guides users through relevant income, deduction, credit, and health care information. Users can quickly decide whether a section is relevant, and skip it if it’s not.
The navigation isn’t as robust as many other tools though. Users have to decide whether a credit (including something like the Earned Income Tax Credit) applies to them. Anyone without deep knowledge of the tax code is likely to miss something.
Users who prefer self-guided navigation will appreciate OLT.com’s “Where do I enter?” button at the top of the software. This helps users to find the information that they entered.
The only drawback to OLT.com’s navigation is it’s “intra-section” navigation. When you enter a section, you must complete all screens before moving on. Since OLT.com is not a streamlined software system, it can feel annoying to click so often. Plus, many of the screens are wordy, so you have to read a lot to be sure you’re not skipping something important. By contrast, better software will ask one or two simple questions to determine whether a user needs to enter more information.
OLT.com’s in-section navigation menu
Ease Of Use
Overall, I found that OLT.com was cumbersome to use. The software includes excessive amounts of text. To make matters worse, the text includes a lot of tax jargon. Each year, we test dozens of tax software solutions. OLT.com is one of the worst when it comes to tax jargon. Even the first few questions are tough.
The text-heavy software isn’t just hard to decipher. The large amounts of text hinder users from filling out forms quickly. To make matters worse, OLT.com doesn’t allow any imports of any tax forms. Users can easily mis-enter information.
One bright point in the software is OLT.com’s built-in calculators. While you have to know some tax jargon to use the calculators, they are accurate. The asset depreciation calculators (used for Rental properties and business expenses) work as expected. The calculators were more complex than most, but users can feel confident that they got the “right” answer by the end.
Each section in OLT.com contains a “Useful Information” button on the top right side of the screen. The button serves up links to the IRS.gov website for detailed (overly detailed) information about relevant topics. It also includes a short section summary. This gives users some information to decide whether the article is relevant to them.
Personally, I think that linking out to the IRS website is a poor choice for OLT.com. It certainly doesn’t make tax filing easier. Users expect real guidance from filing software. Instead, OLT.com serves up complex articles from the IRS.
OLT.com also has a knowledge base. You have to search to find articles relevant to the required topic. The software doesn’t support serving up relevant articles without a user search.
If you upgrade to OLT.com Premium, you’ll get audit assistance and Live Chat tech support. The audit assistance looks like a good value at first. However, Credit Karma Tax offers a similar guarantee for free. TaxHawk and FreeTaxUSA also offer similar guarantees for just a few dollars more.
Is It Secure?
OLT.com has multi-factor authentication, and it is one of the few software companies that require a password change each year. The security of the site seems robust.
Can It Help Me With My Crypto Investments?
OLT.com asks users about virtual currencies at the start of the process. This year, it has a specific series of questions to help users add their information. Users are still responsible for looking up the basis (in US Dollars) for all their cryptocurrency transactions.
Can I Get My Missing Stimulus Check?
Didn’t get a stimulus check this year (or you think you were underpaid)? OLT.com ensures that you have the opportunity to claim a Rebate Recovery Credit for the stimulus check. Questions related to the stimulus money are found at the end of the software, so users need to wade through a lot before entering their information.
How Does OLT.com Compare To Other Tax Software?
OLT.com is a bargain software, so our comparisons focus on other software with similar pricing structures. While most of the competitors are more expensive than OLT.com, they also offer superior functionality.
In 2021, we’re comparing OLT.com to TaxSlayer and FreeTaxUSA.
$9.95 per additional state
$12.95 per additional state
Retirement Income (SS, Pension, etc.)
Small Business Owner (over $5k in expenses)
Final Thoughts On OLT.com in 2021?
Despite the low price, OLT.com doesn’t offer a compelling reason to use the software in 2021. Users who want better software at a similar price should consider TaxHawk rather than OLT.com. Additionally, Credit Karma Tax offers free filing and a better user interface. Users who qualify should also consider the free services from H&R Block or TurboTax.
Once again, tax filers should avoid OLT.com in 2021. Many software companies offer better experiences at lower prices.