UFile 2013 Tax Software Review

As much as I have recommend TurboTax for preparing taxes, I think it’s important to know about other options that might serve you better. There is another well known program that has been gaining momentum. UFile is a serious contender in the Canadian tax preparation market, and it’s one that I recommend as the #1 tax prep software.

I like that it automatically gets you the tax credits you should have coming to you, without the need to fill out a lot of extra forms or answer a lot of questions. UFile is updated regularly so that it includes the most up to date information from the CRA, so you don’t have to worry about missing out on what you’re entitled to.

What to Expect from UFile

The interview process in UFile works well, though not quite as comfortable to use as the TurboTax interviewer. UFile also includes their MaxBack Refund Analyzer, which looks at the whole family to best suggest deductions, credits, and pension splitting. However, the process works well enough, and you can save information for later, if you need to.

It’s also worth noting that UFile is certified for NETFILE, so you can submit your tax return electronically, increasing the speed at which you receive your refund.

UFile Tax Software ReviewUFile’s biggest strength is in their pricing. While there are free tax programs like StudioTax, you may be willing to pay for a more polished and user friendly product. UFile is valued only $19.99 for four tax returns, half the price of TurboTax Standard. UFile’s cost effectiveness becomes even more apparent when compared to higher version’s of TurboTax, many of which add features that are in the one version of UFile.

The fair pricing for UFile is based on the online version, which is only $15.95 for individuals. You can add a spouse for only $10, which makes it relatively inexpensive for you to file your return online.

There is also the UFile Free offer, which is free if you have a simple return or are a new filer, a student, or have an income of less than $20,000. If you add dependents that fit these requirements, you can add them for free as well. This is a nice touch, since some tax preparation software programs will nickel and dime you for every little form or dependent. If you have a simple tax return, consider using this program from UFile to save money on your filing costs. You get the benefit of help preparing your tax return without having to pay anything. This is useful for new filers as well, since they won’t have to pay. It’s a good way to test out the program and decide if you like it.

UFile is my #1 recommended Canadian tax prep software. If you have especially complicated taxes, you might want to consider hiring a professional. However, many consumers find that UFile is a great choice. Even though I think TurboTax is a solid program, UFile is my favorite Canadian tax prep software, and I highly recommend it.

Written by Tom Drake

Tom Drake is the owner and head writer of Canadian Finance Blog. While you’re here, consider signing up for the RSS feed or email subscription. Both deliver the latest articles directly to you! You can also follow me on Twitter for all the latest posts or to send me any comments or questions!

60 Responses to UFile 2013 Tax Software Review

  1. I’ve used QuickTax and UFile online and I acutally find UFile easier. Tax time is fairly easy for my wife and I (one job each, RRSPs, Charity Stuff and thats it) and it was easy. Also for this year even the Home Improvement Credit had its own page and that was it.

  2. I am a non-resident and I I have been using a tax refund provider to file my tax returns as it seemed a bit complicated and I didn’t really have the time to deal with those things. Is it possible for non -residents who have no idea about Canadian tax laws use these softwares?

    • Be warned: You will still have to figure out whether or not various Lines apply to your situation and for that you will need to call Revenue Canada. Then there is the problem that for a lot of the questions UFile doesn’t tell you which Revenue Canada Line it relates to, so it becomes very difficult to figure out which questions apply to you.

      That is not the biggest problem. Their customer service is terrible! So far, after two days trying to resolve one problem, there is no customer service by phone, despite them advertising that this can be used when there are problems resolving things by email. And their instructions in their emails are not specific/detailed enough to be useful, do not show that they have bothered to listen to your description of the problem and they take HOURS to reply, if they reply at all.

      As the emailing isn’t working, I have been asking them again and again to phone me to walk me through a solution, and they just ignore my requests.

      At least Turbo Tax has a phone line for customers!

  3. i have used ufile with netfile for several years and found it a good program. for the first time i have problems – with the 2009 program – and find their support stinks. i cannot hyperlink to the cra for netfiling. all communication is by e-mail and all they do is repeat the netfiling procedure.

  4. Francis,
    UFile’s support system sends an intuitive, immediate, automated response. Usually that response provides the answer you need. As apparently this one does not, please reply to that email and a human response will be gladly provided.

    UFile’s support has been given a bad rap in the past. It is now functioning extremely well. Also, there must be some misunderstanding, as our link to the CRA site works perfectly if you are eligible for NETFILE.

    • How can you say the customer service is good now? I have just wasted over a DAY trying to resolve a problem and I just get emails with irrelevant and unhelpful information, and instructions which lack enough detail and specifics to be useful. Despite all the time I have invested in this I am considering starting all over again with Turbo Tax, who have a phone line for customer service. So far, it appears to be a lie that UFile customer support will phone you when emailing isn’t resolving a problem.

    • After 5-6 years using UFile I think it is time to abandon the product. Why? Because CRA officer found a bug in the software and no one from UFile bothered to answer several of my emails (no phone numbers). I only wanted explanation why software acted the way it did. It took me and CRA guy 1/2 hour to figure it out. But still I don’t know why. Also, still waiting for any feedback from UFile. Poor, very poor customer service!

      • This Ufile Tax programme is absolutely crap!!! I’m stuck to this interview process and hate it. Can’t even make simple changes or additions. I’ve used Ufile 3 years ago and now know why I switched. DO NOT PURCHASE, unless you want a lot of grey hair and I have a lot of returns to do.

  5. Thanks for the review of Ufile
    I have lost faith in Quick tax after discovering the 2008 version did not aggregate all of the entries with regard to T3 slips. As a result I had an unwanted follow up call from CRA. Quick tax can’t explain why amounts entered on the one window where not included in the rollup transfered to the T1.
    Can Ufile split income from joint accounts and attribute to each spouse when filing jointly?

    • I have found several years of using TurboTax that data has gone missing. I lost all my entries for min and wife’s taxes this year fter clicking the save menu option. I am starting all ever and wondering about changing products and egtting my oney back. After all the errors other years I swear I will not buy TurboTax again but here I am sgain! Paper and calculator is faster than trying to figure if all the hidden stuff was dne right again.

  6. After purchasing your program on-line my husband found out that this tax program is not compatable with the one he used last year. Lots of information will have to be re-entered etc. and some info might even be missing. What can we do? If it really doesn’t work can we get a refund?

  7. Thanks for this nice review of Tax Software. Tax software enables you to calculate and estimate your taxes for evaluating your liability areas. Completing tax return is much easier, faster and convenience than ever.

  8. Ufile 2009 tax year. There seems to be a problem with Scedule 12 Home Improvement page. Their Help page? It is Use-less; confusing!
    Can anyone say where their HELP (less) centre is located?
    I received several respose-emails asking for ME to clarify the problem. What do they NOT understand about: YOUR SCHEDULE 12 PAGE DOES NOT WORK!! FIX IT!!

  9. Hi, Is there a place we can download ufile, I broke the cd by accident, don’t need the key, please email me. Thanks

  10. I’ve used UFile for many years. Until this year, I’d only ever had one problem (a minor miscalc which was later resolved). My experiences this year however have been absolutely horrible. I took up an early payment discount offer in Feb but when I went to file online during tax time, there was no credit on my account and I was asked to pay again. I sent multiple emails (the only way you can contact UFile) over a week’s time to request some assistance, but I never heard back (aside from a useless auto reply). My only option now is to pay again or redo my taxes and file elsewhere. Will have to try QuickTax … looks like you get what you pay for. UFile has a good program but really poor customer service if there are any issues — not a good mix for something as time-sensitive and important as filing your taxes.

  11. I do tax returns for self and several family members each year. Purchased UFile for first time this year. Input return but software did not perform calculation or save data. Problem repeated, a frustrating waste of time. Email to Ufile got back an autoreply with 10-15 suggested solutions, none of which was relevant. No helpline. Purchased Quicktax, worked like a charm in comparison. Purchase of UFile was a waste of time and cost that in the end was worthless to me – as far as I know I can’t return it. Received email survey today from Ufile. Went to complete and was told survey was full. I will stick with Quicktax which works for me and would recommend that program over Ufile, notwithstanding Quicktax costs $20 more.

  12. Just a quick update to my May 7 2010 10:52 pm rant. I eventually did hear back from UFile. It took some time and a number of emails, but they did apologize and ultimately provided a more than fair resolution.

    Cheers,
    Nick

  13. I don’t think you wanna trust UFile. I used UFile this year. My return was re-assessed and CRA said my return was wrong and I have to pay a fine. I’ll definitely stay away from it next year.

      • My 2010 was also reassessed by the CRA, as UFILE incorrectly calculated my refund… I did not have anything complex – standard T4 and RRSPs.

    • My sister’s income tax was also re-assessed. The software made claims automatically, which shouldn’t have. Now CRA accuses her of lying and ask to pay penalty. Ufile customer support doesn’t help much (very frustrating). Do you know of any agency that can help in cases like these?

      Thanks.
      Roger

  14. I have always used Quicktax for more than 10 years. This year, I decided to try UFILE as it was cheaper. I completed my husband’s tax return for 2010 and was disappointed when a message said he is not qualified to NETFILE. I have always netfile my family’s tax returns. I’m going back to using Quicktax, not Turbo. UFILE was a waste of money.

  15. I found my Ufile experience totally unacceptable. I’m a software engineer and understand computers.

    The form filling works but NETFiling does not. It does not save the return in TAX format, so I can not get past that point and NETFile it.

    The customer service is abominable – send emails with irrelevant links.This the first and last time I bought this garbage

  16. This year, Feb. 28/2012 sucked for Ufile, my hubby and I both file separately, so we each paid full price to file, but when it came to download and save our file to netfile, it wouldn’t save, Ufile has no phone help line, and we had to beg to get our proper files emailed to us. I did, hubby is still waiting… asked for a refund, no response. We wished we never used it !!!!!!

  17. You should take part in a contest for one of the best blogs on the web. I will recommend this site!

  18. UFile HELP is unacceptable. Here is my problem:

    UFile will not calculate when RESULTS is clicked on. Sent request on a Tuesday, finally got a reply on Saturday which was useless, and still program is not working. Extremely frustrating when problem cannot be resolved. Here is answer I got.

    “We’ve increased the calc timer to 120/140 seconds.
    This is likely good for all cases but the following until we see otherwise:
    Pension income splitting + Foreign income which will currently exceed the threshold.
    I would ask you to try again and let me know the results.
    Regards,
    Gaetan on behalf of the UFile Team

    UFile.ca
    File Online On Time. ”

    What does one do to make these people accountable?

  19. I have used both ufile and turbo tax to file my tax return. I found both are equally good. However, utile is much cheaper than turbo tax. I do not see any reason why using turbo tax over ufile. From now on, ufile will be my tax return software.

    • I agree with you! I used TurboTax in 2003 and 2011, and UFile in 2004-2010. Never a problem when instructions are followed. I found TurboTax somewhat cumbersome to follow. It’s UFile for me in 2012 – as long as I can find it, or down-load on-line for $20!

  20. H+R Block dropped their price to $40.00 this year if you have done a return before and mention your using lower cost software for a basic return. I mean lets face it you fill in about 8 boxes, your personal info and you can do a tax return in 15 minutes now?

    Secondly anyone who is connected to a computer can download a great easy to use product called “Studiotax” FOR FREE! In downloads and installs in 10 minutes and you can have your taxes done perfectly in about a half hour or 45 minutes. If you feel bad about using the product for free then you can donate a few dollars to them. There are no ads in the software and it works flawlessly.

  21. I am using Ufile Plus to file the return for small business and investment this year. It cost only $29.99 and can file up to 16 returns.
    I find it especially useful when you have rental properties. Instead of giving $100 for each property you own to accoutant. You can do it easily with Ufile Plus. You need to do some book keeping yourself though.

  22. I’ve been using UFile for a few years now, and switched to the online version this year. Didn’t really notice any difference between the online and standalone versions. I only switched because the online version is free for students, which saved me $20 this year.
    But if you are from Ontario, be very careful with UFile’s handling of the Ontario Trillium Benefit!! It is not a straightforward process if you are filing for both yourself and a spouse. The first time I filled out the interview, I actually realized that UFile wasn’t filling out the Trillium Benefit forms at all.
    I wrote a post on how to deal with this for anyone to whom this applies. Its not necessarily a glitch in the software, its just not done in a user friendly manner.
    http://www.earthandmoney.ca/navigating-ontario-trillium-benefit/

  23. I do not have an encouraging experience with UFile online. All the data that I had entered over several days/hours are no more accessible. The help desk of the company is also very slow and inefficient in problem solving. They even asked for my permission to access my personal data. Unwillingly I gave them the permission. Yet nothing has materialized yet.
    Would I be inclined to use UFile again in the future. Certainly NOT. Particularly if they continue failing to provide me with a link to my own tax data over the next few hours.

    • I had been using Ufile online for a number of years. This year I changed my username and e-mail address and could no longer access my account. I contacted Ufile a number of times (via e-mail as there is no phone number available) over many days and finally gave up trying to get a helpful answer. I have moved on to Studio Tax, it’s free and easy to use. It doesn’t have Maxback feature but it’s not difficult to change scenarios and see where you can get the maximum benefit.

  24. Ufile customer service stinks to high heaven. I will not use this product ever again. Out of the three T4As I filled in interview section, only one made it into the tax results. I got dinged by CRA for not reporting the missing T4As and Ufile kept sending obtuse responses refusing to accept liability as per their guarantee. Use any other product but this one.

    • Sounds like you claimed the $1000 pension exemption for 2 people? which can only be claimed if you are 65. Ufile does this automatically if your birthdate is entered correctly.

  25. I have been using UFile since 2009 and found that it did the job. For this tax year 2012, I can not find UFile at Best Buy or Future Shop. I can order it on-line but UFile wants to charge $10 for shipping. Not worth the hassle when I can pick-up TurboTax Basic at Staples for $20.

  26. Hello Everyone,
    I have been using Ufile for the past 10 years, and No issues what so ever at all.. for those who think that ufile does not calculate it correctly, I would suggest that you fill-up the same information on the online version of turbo tax and compare if the values are the same. if it is, then why pay more for turbo tax or others if you can get the same value from ufile.. at the start i used to compare ufile with turbo tax or even with actual tax filing service personal that you find in the mall, and I always found the I get not just a better value, but also better tax return (very minor).

  27. I never use the online tax sites but want on my computer and I send the disc to my sister who does 3 more returns. I know I could download and burn a disc but WT heck. Problem with TTax is for $20 it will only do T4 and donations (does this include Medical?). Not all the other stuff such as T3 and capital gains/losses, etc. It will also not do ‘Business for Self’ which is included with personal income tax. TTax wants to upgrade you to the next model for $40 and when I looked it up it still doesn’t show it does everything Ufile does for just $20. I’ve not had Ufile make any errors for the 6 yrs using it. If you’ve claimed things like a $1000 pension exemption and then it was disallowed, you should let Ufile handle the input which it does automatically based on your birthdate. Not allowed under 65.
    Not available yet at the Source or London Drugs but guess it will be.

  28. I used TurboTax way back in 2002 (it was QuickTax at that time) then switched to UFile in 2003 although I can’t remember why. UFile was stream-lined and thorough, and most closely matched my experience using hard copies. For 2011 tax year, I switched to TurboTax because I couldn’t readily find UFIle and there was a super discount coupon I had for TurboTax, normally $30 or $40, that matched the same $20 price for UFile. I found the navigation in TurboTax to be very cumbersome. I am switching back to UFile for the 2012 tax year because it is easier to navigate, and provided the same or more expertise than TurboTax at only $20! I never had a problem with net-filing with either TurboTax or UFile, so in that respect, both are fine.

  29. I have UFile 2012 that I bought at the Source for $19.95. Turbo can’t touch the price because the basic doesn’t do what UFile does as to other forms of income.
    One thing that irks me about a UFile download is that they don’t give you a deal even though they save on a box, envelope, instruction card, shipping and profit for the retailer – ???? Seems kinda stupid in my opinion.

  30. UFile appears to be a complete farce. The only testimonials are great; no way to submit a bad one. I’ve been struggling with UFILE and a very simple tax return for over 12 hours now. Absolutely no support from EFILE, no responses to email or online questions. It worked well last year but a piece of junk this year with no customer support.

  31. After reading all these horrible comments about Ufile’s failures and lousy customer service, I would like to talk to a real customer service person. Do you have any phone number? I have looked at their website and found none. I have already sent emails and no response ever. My issue is that the program does not generate Schedule ON (S12) after you have inputted charges to claim for Ont healthy home tax credits. One user already posted the same issue but has gotten no response either. Please help. Thank you!

  32. I switched from Intuit’s tax prep software to UFile back in 2007 and have been using it ever since. I’ve never had any problems to prepare or NetFile my returns. The software does have a couple of irritating bugs, however. If I try to view or print the Quebec barcode page the program crashes. The doctor’s solution is to choose to print a customized report and select all pages except the barcode page. It also crashes when I exit the program whether or not I have a tax file opened. These problems started when I moved to Windows 7 x64 which I have been using since 2011. I am surprised each year to see that they have not corrected them, however, so far I have lived with its flaws. I am curious to learn if anyone else has experienced this as well.

    • As Tom says, I’ve been using Ufile for years – since 2006. It seems that some people have particular problems using the online version rather than the installed software. I always use the software because it’s much quicker and you can play with different allocations of income between spouses. I’ve also had Windows 7 64 bit since Mar 10 and this is my 4th time using Ufile on same. I’ve never had a crash, for any reason. Mind you, Ufile does not run in 64 bit mode.
      For what it’s worth, I refuse to use Netfile as long as I have to store the original receipts for medical and donations for 7 years!! I file by paper and send the originals to them, retaining electronic copies only. Of course my files are backed up every week onto a separate harddrive.

  33. QuickTax now is called TurboTax which is made/owned by Intuit, an American software company (even though there is a “Turbotax.Intuit.CA”.
    Neither BestBuy or FutureShop here in Vancouver carry UFile -they used to but now their stores are full of stands with TurboTax. FS is owned by BB and therefore the same company. It creates “competition” by having 2 retail outlets operating under one umbrella.
    I have used UFile for many years and really like it the way it lets you minimize taxes between you and your spouse.

  34. I prefer Ufile, in my opinion it is straight forward to use. I had previously used Ufile until 2 years ago I mistakenly purchase another brand of tax software and decided to continue to evaluate it. After completing the first tax filing I realized I definitely was using cumbersome software. With 3 more tax filings to complete I downloaded Ufile and will continue to support Ufile.

  35. I would stay away from Ufile. Their results are different than CRA’s and i used simpletax this year and the results were exactly the same.

  36. I have been a loyal ufile user till this year because I couldn’t find the darn software. It used to be everywhere, futureshop, bestbuy and walmart. I was told by one of the stores that turbotax has paid a fee to be the one and only offering. What a shame. I did find out that the Source still offered it but all the cheapest simple versions were sold out. I noticed that the online version charges more for an individual and spouse now than I used to pay…which was $15-19 roughly. We have the simplest of taxes so I ended up going with turbotax. What I loved about ufile was that it would pick up the previous years data on your computer automatically. Guess what, turbotax doesn’t unless you pay an extra fee. With said fee it will pick up any previous tax software data but I was determined to not pay so it took a little longer and I’ll have to wait for my rrsp contribution room data on my tax return statement I suppose.

    Next year I’ll try to get an early start to find ufile again. It is significantly more user friendly.

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