Does the government offer free tax software?

The government provides a list of tax preparation software that is NetFile compatible.



From the Summer 2013 issue of the magazine.


calculator_322Q: I see there is a push to have taxpayers file electronically. Does the government offer free software, or do I need to purchase a program like TurboTax? Does NetFile take the place of these other software programs?

—R. Boyko, Red Deer, Alta.

A: “Love and marriage. They go together like a horse and carriage,” right Sinatra? NetFile and tax preparation software go together too because NetFile doesn’t replace the software you need to file online. You still need to use a program to “prepare” your return, then you “transmit” it to the CRA using NetFile. While technically you could print out your return and mail it in, that really is a waste of a stamp. The government doesn’t offer free preparation software itself but does provide a list of free certified products. NetFile and tax prep software… Sing with me: “You can’t have one. You can’t have one without the other.”

Bruce Sellery is a frequent guest on financial television shows and author of Moolala. Do you have your own personal question? Write to Bruce at

2 comments on “Does the government offer free tax software?

  1. Its a very good question about the tax payment. For the tax payment people follow many type of ways, if there are some free tax software for the users then it will be better, but these type of things are not possible for the governmnet.


  2. If Govt will offer in such way so then there would be huge bad impact to everyone with GOVT and that's why I think this should not do. Thanks


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