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2018 Review of UltraTax CS

UltraTax CS is part of the CS Professional Suite of applications from Thomson Reuters. Best suited for large accounting firms, UltraTax CS can be used as a stand-alone application, but performs best when coupled with other CS Professional Suite ...


UltraTax CS, From Thomson Reuters

From the 2018 reviews of professional tax preparation systems.

UltraTax CS is part of the CS Professional Suite of applications from Thomson Reuters. Best suited for large accounting firms, UltraTax CS can be used as a stand-alone application, but performs best when coupled with other CS Professional Suite applications. Designed for efficiency, UltraTax CS can be deployed in a variety of ways, including on a desktop or network, accessed as a hosted solution or as a SaaS application.

UltraTax CS does not offer mobile accessibility, though there are mobile apps for both Practice CS and NetClient CS, with both products integrating with UltraTax CS.

The UltraTax CS homepage is designed for efficient navigation, with users able to access a variety of options, including e-filing news and transmission status, direct access to product guides, staff monitoring tools, client profiles, and software updates. Users can easily create quick access to frequently used system functions, and the product also offers multi-monitor capability, with users able to utilize up to four monitors with unique views. Each monitor can be configured separately, and users can easily toggle between screens as needed, even displaying completed tax forms to clients if desired.

UltraTax CS supports multiple forms including 1040, 1041, 1120, 1120C, 1120S, 1120 Consolidated, 706, 709, 990, 5500 and 2290. The product also offers more than 200 state and local products. The product also offers LLC filings, if allowed, and composite returns.

UltraTax CS supports 1040 e-filing including federal returns and 1040 returns for all states that accept e-filing. The product also offers business e-filing for federal forms 1120, 1120S, 1041, 990, 5500, as well as numerous state returns. The product also supports FinCEN Form 114 e-filing for foreign bank reporting for 1040, 1120, 1065, and 1041. To simplify the process, UltraTax CS offers a variety of tools to make e-filing more efficient, such as the ability to error-check a return while it’s being processed. The product calculates data as its entered, and offers AMT calculations, passive activity capability, and an optional oil and gas module that calculates depletion, tax references for percentage depletion, and tracks depletion on a well-by-well basis. UltraTax CS also alerts system users to potential problems or missing data.

The Web Client Organizer allows users to create a custom questionnaire for each client, which they can access and answer via the firm website. Completed questionnaires can then be imported directly into UltraTax CS, with no additional data entry needed. The NetClient CS Portal allows clients to share source documents securely and completed tax returns can be posted to the portal as a read-only PDF for easy client access.

Workpapers CS provides firms with the ability to easily manage work papers and source documents. For a more paperless approach, users can integrate FileCabinet CS with UltraTax CS, which will organize, store, and archive any document, making it easy to distribute files to colleagues and clients alike. Files are easily accessible directly from UltraTax CS, so users don’t even need to open FileCabinet CS.

UltraTax CS offers seamless integration with other CS Professional Suite applications including Accounting CS, Accounting CS Payroll, Checkpoint, FileCabinet CS, Fixed Assets CS, GoFileRoom, NetClient CS, Onvio Firm Management, Planner CS, Practice CS, and Workpapers CS, enabling firms to utilize a central system that offers tax planning and preparation, practice management, document management, and a client portal. UltraTax CS also integrates with Microsoft applications such as Excel and Word, as well as Thomson Reuters Checkpoint and PPC Deskbooks, and users can export client data from UltraTax/1040 to the Bureau of National Affairs (BNA) Income Tax Spreadsheet.  

UltraTax CS users can access help resources by clicking on the F1 key from any screen. The Help and How-To Center offers a searchable knowledgebase that is available 24/7, along with access to new feature details, and system troubleshooting options. Free U.S. based, toll-free support is included with the product, with support available during regular business hours, with extended hours available during tax season. Users can also contact support via chat, email or fax as well. A variety of training options are also offered including on-demand, web, and classroom training, with custom training and consulting options available as well.

UltraTax CS is a robust tax compliance application that is best suited for larger accounting firms that prepare complex tax returns for a variety of clients. Though UltraTax CS can be used as a stand-alone application, it truly shines when coupled with CS Professional Suite applications. Pricing for UltraTax is customized for each user and is typically based on the number of users and deployment option chosen, with the product usually starting at around $3,000 for a single user, with product support included in the pricing.

2018 Rating – 5 Stars