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Lacerte's lack of responsiveness

Level 2

Why do we bother making suggestions? Lacerte doesn't listen. For example I've suggested for years that they move the "Delete this year, delete next year" options to the top of every screen instead of stashing it in different places on each screen. I don't want to play "where's Waldo?" when I'm doing input.

Another example is in giving us the option of printing the estimated tax schedule in the client letter but not printing coupons. And why do we have to print blank coupons when there may not be an estimated tax payment due for that particular quarter? What a waste of paper!

Sort the charities alphabetically in the input screen? Not a chance. That's too difficult for the programmers to do.

Print the state balance due coupon with the federal balance due coupon with the efile authorization forms? Why would they give us the option of printing the three forms that go to the client together?

Clearly our suggestions go right into the trash so why bother? They should hire users to evaluate the suggestions.


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1 Comment 1
Level 4

To some extent I agree with you.  (They *print* the charities in alphabetical order each year, they could just as well pro-forma them that way, too.)

However, that works only for the lines where there are "lots of entries" (page25/itemized, codes 32/cash and 33/non-cash donees).  Anything that has its own identity (like a donee on page26/non-cash over $500) you don't really want them changing the order, because other data elsewhere may have dependencies of "go look at ThatForm #17."  Well, if "#17" has now been re-number to "#8" to fit in alphabetical order, things don't calculate correctly any more.
  This applies equally to anything that has its own identity on a page, so 10/wages, 11/interest, 12/dividends, 13/pensions, 14/government, 16/business, 17/sales, 18/rentals, 19/farms, 20.X/partnerships, 22/depreciation, 26/non-cash, 27/moves, 29/home offices, 30/employee expenses...  fundamentally, "**bleep** near every" input page.

To some extent I disagree with you.  I don't understand why people get hung up on finding the "delete" box.  Learn to use your software.  Ctrl+W(sWitch to Batch input) | "type 100 <enter>" | Ctrl+W(sWitch *BACK* to Interactive)....  oh, look!  You're ON the "delete this year/next year" field.
  What I wish that they would do is to EXPAND the usage of "3/do nothing with this property this year, but still pro forma it to next year" on those codes 100.  They added them to the page26/noncash donee, and expanded to page13/pensions...  keep expanding!  Fill in the rest of "everything in that laundry list above" for pages that have standalone properties to record.
  (Although with that said: I agree with you having that be right at the top of ALL the pages where it exists would be a big improvement.)

"State payment voucher".  I'm guessing you're in one of the states that has NO state signature form.  We have a form.  We need FOUR pieces of paper (sign fed, sign state, pay fed, pay state).
  And I say again: learn to use your software.  You know that you can CHANGE the order in which things print in your Government Copy, right?  For example, you can put your signature form and your voucher as the ONLY two things that print in fed, and your signature form and voucher as the ONLY two things that print in state, and...  oh, look!  The (3 or 4) pages you need, conveniently right next to each other.  (Possibly preceded by other things you have printing, and/or followed by still other things you have printing [like "separately filed forms", 4868/PoA, whatever], and so on.)

I would also like to see things like "have the Grid pages (printed input sheets) *MATCH* the grid pages (inside the program)."  Like the 17/sales.  They added another column to the program, but did NOT add it to the paper page.  This makes the paper page MUCH harder to actually be USEFUL.

And possibly my longest-running complaint: have the program ACTUALLY DO...  what the input sheet SAYS it will.  Like "3" for "MFS".  Nope.  Can't have it.  Oh, we're going to *STORE* the value of "3" when you move away from the field, but you have to either go to the pull-down and select the third entry down, OR ELSE TYPE until you get to the first unique character that makes the filing status change.  (For those of you who missed it, that means "married filing s" == SIXTEEN [16] characters.)
  ...as opposed to LET ME TYPE A GODDAMN THREE, like we used to be able to.
  (And for the record, when I had a colleague who uses the eOrganizers send me one, the CLIENTS have the ability to type a "3" for their filing status.  WHY NOT THE PREPARERS, who are actually PAYING Lacerte the tens of thousands of dollars to use their software?!?)

Robert Kirk
Rockville, MD

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