Skip to main content

Form Magic, Inc. — Tax-Mate 2005

From the October 2005 Review of W-2/1099

Tax-Mate 2005 is offered in three versions: Tax-Mate Print, Tax-Mate Transmittal,
and Tax-Mate Advisor. Tax-Mate Print, the base level product, is designed for
businesses that need to produce and distribute a limited number of 1099 and
W-2 forms, and submit the data via printed Form(s) 1096 and W3. Tax-Mate Print
supports Form(s) 1099-DIV, 1099-INT, 1099-MISC, 1099-R, and W2.

Tax-Mate Transmittal, the next level product, is designed for businesses,
schools or credit unions that require the ability to produce, distribute and
submit electronically or via paper means. In addition to the forms supported
by Tax-Mate Print, Tax-Mate Transmittal includes support for Form(s) 1098, 1098-E,
1098-T, 5498, 5498-SA, and 5498-ESA. Tax-Mate Advisor, the top-level product,
provides businesses, banks and accounting firms with the form and filing support
found in Tax-Mate Transmittal with the addition of support for Form(s) 1099-A,
1099-B, 1099-C, 1099-CAP, 1099-G, 1099-H, 1099-LTC, 1099-SA, 1099-OID, 1099-PATR,
1099-Q, and 1099-S.

All versions will handle any number of payers/payees and unlimited electronic
or magnetic media filing. The Print version is $89, the Transmittal is $189
and the Adviser is $289 for new customers. Returning customers get up to a 25
percent discount when reordering. A Mac version is also available with the same
feature and price as the Windows version.

Usability/Navigation — 5 Stars
Tax-Mate offers a functional interface that provides a list of forms, recipients
and clients. Three different views are available: Browse, Find and Preview modes.
Data entry is performed by selecting a form from the Forms pull-down menu and
then entering payer and recipient information on the left side of the entry
sheet. Entry fields for payer and recipient use an AutoFill function that delivers
pull-down lists of all available users for those groups. After selection of
an existing payer or payee, the system automatically populates the address,
contact and EIN/TIN fields on the applicable form. Data-entry fields are similar
to actual forms. While in data-entry mode, users can access form-specific IRS
directions that open in a separate window. Tax-Mate provides *.PDF versions
of more than 20 IRS forms, which is very handy in answering questions as they

Tax-Mate contains other productivity-enhancing features, such as the ability
to zoom with one click, client-level password protection, spell checking, easy
duplication of records, and custom font sizes and colors. An Error Check function
performs a check on the current form or all forms. Results of the Error Check
are provided on-screen where the user can select and go directly to the forms
on which errors were found.
Tax-Mate is very user friendly, and it scores high on usability once users pick
up the program’s flow, which results in a very efficient system with a
short learning curve.

Reporting & Import/Export Capabilities — 4.5 Stars
While Tax-Mate does not import directly from specific accounting programs, its
import/export capabilities get the job done. Tax-Mate accepts files in *.CSV
and many other file formats. The import utility provides a field-matching function
that allows users to quickly map imported data files. Tax-Mate provides self-totaling
1096 and W-3 forms and supports all Windows-compatible printers. It prints to
plain paper and pre-printed forms.

Support For Paperless Transmission — 4.5 Stars
Tax-Mate Advisor includes a handy transmission wizard that supports magnetic
and electronic filing. This wizard makes the actual uploads process easier for
first-time and infrequent users, or for those such as myself who have “slept
since then!”

Help/Training — 4.5 Stars
Tax-Mate offers an HTML-based Help utility, a tutorial, access to IRS instructions,
and free traditional telephone support. All three programs can be downloaded
via the company’s web site along with program updates.

2005 Overall Rating — 4.5 Stars