There are 2 free products, and you are in the wrong one.
I've left you info below about the other free product--TurboTax Free File Program--which is the one affiliated with the IRS Free File Alliance. If you are having a roadblock due to student loan interest, you are in the wrong free product.
TurboTax does have 2 free products, but if you are being charged, you
are not in one of them. The regular Free Edition cannot handle student loan interest, but the TurboTax Free File Program (IRS affiliated) can. I'll tell you more about it below.
If you started out in regular Free Edition (which is free for Federal and State), you may be asked to upgrade to Deluxe due to a situation in your return that Free Edition cannot handle.
Here are some common things that cannot be handled by the regular Free Edition:
Business or 1099-MISC income
Sales of stocks/mutual funds/bonds
Rental property income
Foreign Earned Income
Credits, deductions and income reported on the new schedules 1–6, such as the Student Loan Interest Deduction
If desired, here's how to switch and start over in TurboTax Free File Program.
NOTE: If you switch to Free File Program by that method, and find out later you don't qualify, you won't be able to go back to regular Online TurboTax in that same account. So instead of switching that way, if you wish you could start a new account (User ID) at the Free File Program website, which would maintain the option of returning to the other Online TurboTax account, if necessary.
<a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="https://turbotax.intuit.com/taxfreedom/">https://turbotax.intuit.com/taxfreedom/</a>
It has no fees or upgrades.
If you tried to use that site with a pre-existing TurboTax User ID, it may have put you into regular Free Edition. YOu have to use a NEW User ID at the TurboTax Free File site, or you have to switch by the method in the FAQ above about how to switch.
When your return is open, what edition is displayed when you look in the top left corner next to the TurboTax logo.
There are no upgrades or fees in the TurboTax Free File Program. If it turns out someone doesn't qualify because they enter too much income, for example, it simply tells them they can't use it and have to select a different product.
But your situation with student loan interest does not disqualify anyone in TurboTax Free File Program. It triggers an upgrade only in the regular Free Edition.
So yes. I did those things. I shall clear cache and try again, but you are literally not giving me new information.
You may need a new User ID to use TurboTax Free File Program, if it keeps putting you into Online TurboTax.
If you already had an Online TurboTax User ID, and tried to log in at TurboTax Free File Program website, then it likely keeps putting you into Free Edition instead of TurboTax Free File Program. In that case the only thing to do is use a new account (new User ID) started at the TurboTax Free File Program site if you can't switch with the FAQ above.
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