Works again for Tax Year 2013. State Farm is again offering their bank and credit card customers TurboTax tax-prep software at a significant discount. TurboTax Federal Deluxe Online is free, Premier is $20, Home & Business is $30, and State is also included free with e-File for all versions. Software downloads are also available (Deluxe $20, Premier $30, Home & Business $40). I ran an experiment last year and found it only took a one-time $25 deposit and a week’s time to obtain this valuable perk. Details below.
(Side note: TurboTax Deluxe 2013 no longer supports stock and mutual fund sales reported on Schedule D. You must now pay for the $20 Premier version in order to get this feature. Rather disappointing feature reduction, Intuit!)
According to my blog archives, from 2006-2009 State Farm offered TurboTax Deluxe for free to all customers including insurance policyholders. Starting in 2010 or 2011, they started offering it only to bank and credit card customers. I recommend opening a “Free Checking” bank account instead of a new credit card account, as many other credit cards are offering $500+ value in sign-up bonuses while the State Farm one does not. I’d much rather get $500 for a credit check and just put $25 in a State Farm bank account indefinitely while earning the same perks. Think of it as earning 50% APY interest every year on that $25! I did not get hit with a credit check for opening the State Farm bank account.
New Bank Account Application Process Details
First, I opened a new account online. Make sure to apply for “Free Checking” and not “Interest Checking” which has higher minimum balance requirements. I was able to do everything online, nothing to mail in. New customers must fund their checking account with at least $25, and the easiest methods are to use an online bank transfer or fund with a credit card. The site warns you that it may be classified as a cash advance, and in the spirit of discovery I tried using a Citi credit card and it was indeed marked a cash advance (I paid it off immediately so the interest charges on $25 should be less than $2).
Next, get an account number and gain online access.. You’ll need to wait for approval and a snail mail letter with your new account number. There may be another way to get this number faster (calling in?) but I just waited a few days. You’ll need your account number to link your bank account to your online profile. After providing it, I had to wait about 24 hours for the account to show up online.
Success! Once your bank account shows up in your online profile, the website will recognize you as a State Farm Bank customer and you’ll be given access to free TurboTax. Simply log into your account and look for the TurboTax logo under the right sidebar. You should see the following new prices (click to see full screenshot):
To see the State filing prices, click on the blue “State additional” link. You should see this popup showing that it’s also free. Retail for State is $36.99.
Note: TurboTax only charges you when you finally file your return. To guarantee that you’ll get your free software, you’ll have to access TurboTax initially every single time via StateFarm.com and NOT TurboTax.com. I simply changed my browser bookmark to go to StateFarm.com. You’ll still eventually do your taxes on a secure site at TurboTax.com, but you need the redirect from State Farm’s site.
To receive your special TurboTax offer, you must access and complete your return through the links on statefarm.com. If you access your return directly from Intuit’s site, payment will be required.