From the November 2005 Review of Tax
CCH’s ProSystem fx Planning is a comprehensive tax planning
program that computes federal taxes and supports the following states: AL, AZ,
CA, CO, CT, GA, ID, IL, IN, KS, LA, ME, MD, MI, MN, MS, MO, NE, NJ, NM, NY,
NC, OH, OR, SC, UT and WV. ProSystem fx Planning supports other states
via its built-in Generic State model, based upon user-provided information.
Users can compute tax planning multiple scenarios simultaneously with detailed
calculations and customizable reports. ProSystem fx Planning links
directly to CCH’s tax preparation products or it may be used on a stand-alone
basis. ProSystem fx Planning costs $425.
Program Use/Data Entry — 5 Stars
ProSystem fx Planning opens to a spreadsheet interface that features
pull-down menus and an icon-populated toolbar for easy access to program functions.
Navigation is fast, offering something for the “heads-down” keyboard
users or for those who prefer to use Windows conventions and their mouse.
Kudos to the “great thinking department” for the “expand
to detail” column — a special column in every worksheet. Each row
of the worksheet has a box in the “expand to detail” column. If
the box is marked, detailed sub-worksheet information may be viewed by clicking
the marked box. Simple, fast and intuitive, this built-in feature may convert
a lot of “heads-down” users.
Client data may be imported or manually entered via a spreadsheet-style grid
that opens within the Main Worksheet, showing data for each case and allowing
entry of detailed information through 2006. Once imported or entered, ProSystem
fx Planning performs all calculations and enables users to immediately
see how changes to key input fields will affect a client’s tax liabilities.
ProSystem fx Planning can calculate a Variance Column, which is useful
in analyzing program output. The Variance can be viewed in dollars or as a percentage.
Up to 30 tax scenario-cases per tax plan per year are supported, while tax years
are limited to four: previous, current and the coming two years. ProSystem fx
Planning offers very comprehensive tax calculations, including complete federal
It also provides comprehensive deduction information with related calculations,
including (the various) qualified plan contributions, itemized deductions, personal
exemptions, and AMT allowables. ProSystem fx Planning calculates required
federal and state estimated tax payments and thresholds for related penalty
calculations. Users can produce federal and state estimated tax-payment vouchers.
ProSystem fx Planning also has a built-in, user-selectable feature
called AutoFlow, which allows for the automatic transfer of data from the initial
year into future
(columns) years. Users can turn AutoFlow on or off via the Tools icon (button)
on the toolbar. The program’s (worksheet) screens may be customized to
tailor data input to a given user’s needs and preferences. Such customization
is available on a workstation-by-workstation basis. Thank you!
Reporting — 5 Stars
ProSystem fx Planning offers customizable reporting options with the
ability to print and view side-by-side reports. It allows printing of comprehensive
multi-year tax projections, including all sub-worksheets, tax estimates, plan
summaries and plan reports. Reports are not available for previewing prior to
Import/Export Capabilities — 4.5 Stars
ProSystem fx Planning fully integrates with and imports data directly
from ProSystem fx Tax, but does not offer the ability to import data
from other tax programs.
Help/Training & Support — 5 Stars
ProSystem fx Planning offers strong built-in Help via the F1 key as
well as row-specific Help lookups, FAQs, Tool Tips and program updates that
can be accessed online via ProSystem fx on the Web. CCH offers traditional
technical support via its toll-free telephone customer support line and electronically
through ProSystem fx support online. Training is available via classroom
and web-based CPE-eligible sessions.
2005 Overall Rating: 5 Stars