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How do I change my tax return to free from self employed and there isn’t an option for tool tips or whatever either

2 Replies
Level 13

How do I change my tax return to free from self employed and there isn’t an option for tool tips or whatever either

Level 15

How do I change my tax return to free from self employed and there isn’t an option for tool tips or whatever either

TurboTax has 2 free products.  I'll tell you about both of them below.


You appear to be using  Self-Employed Edition which is currently discounted at $90 for a Federal return (normally $120) and $40 for a state return (normally $50).  And if you choose to pay the fees out of the Federal refund, there is an additional $40 service fee ($45 for California filers.)


  Why are you using that edition?   Do you have self-employment income and expenses from a business, independent contacting, etc.?   I'll tell you about the 2 free products, but if you have self-employment income and need Schedule C, you can't use the first one, although you may be able to use the second free product, if you qualify.  Even if you can't use either free product,  you may be able to downgrade to a lower edition if you don't need the Self-Employed Edition.


The regular Free Edition is for very simple returns and not everyone can use it.  Certain forms are not available in Free Edition and require an upgrade to Deluxe or higher, such as one of Schedules 1-3, itemized deductions, education credits, student loan interest, retirement savers credit, etc.   It cannot handle self-employed income, capital gains/losses, rental/royalty income, schedule K-1, etc.   Did you start in Free Edition and had to upgrade?    See this FAQ on some situations where one cannot use Free Edition:

FAQ:  Why do I have to upgrade from Free Edition?


If you have a very simple return, don't need Schedules 1-3, and are sure you don't otherwise need Deluxe or a higher edition, here's how to start over and choose regular Free Edition.   Again, regular Free Edition, Deluxe, and Premier cannot handle self-employment income.

FAQ:  How do I clear and start over in Online TurboTax?


The other free product (TurboTax IRS Free File Program) is fully-featured and can prepare all the usual forms and schedules. It can handle self-employed income, 1099-MISC, etc. For example, in addition to Schedules 1-3 it can prepare Schedule C, D, E, F, etc., and enter K-1.  So it can handle self-employment income.   But one has to meet one of the qualifications to use.  See below:


To qualify for free 2020 federal and state tax returns through the IRS Free File Program delivered by TurboTax, you just need to meet one of these requirements:

      • Your 2020 AGI is $39,000 or less (for Married Filing Jointly returns, combined AGI of both spouses cannot be over that limit),  or
      • You qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC); or
      • In 2020, you served as active duty military (including Reservists and National Guard) with a maximum AGI of $72,000, and you have a military-issued W-2.


If you qualify for that program and want to use it, see these 2 FAQs:


FAQ:  What is the TurboTax IRS Free File Program?


FAQ:  How do I switch to the TurboTax IRS Free File Program?


There are other free filing options available from the IRS website that may have different income level qualifications but may have other restrictions.  You can browse the various options here:


Also, you said you couldn't find the Tax Tools tab.  You must have your 2020 return open in order to see Tax Tools in the left menu column.  See this image.



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