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Doing The Work For You: The New Version Of TurboTax Automatically Calls Your Dad And Asks Him A Bunch Of Questions

It’s tax season again, and with April 15 quickly approaching, chances are that many young people across the country will soon find themselves stressing out over how to file their taxes. But TurboTax is hoping to take some of the panic and anxiety away this year, as this morning the company announced the rollout of a new feature that automatically calls your dad and asks him a bunch of tax questions.

Whoa. This is a game changer.

The new dad-calling option, which you can activate by going to the TurboTax website and registering for the Dad Plus product package, condenses the whole process of getting confused, freaking out, and calling your dad into a single click. Just hit the “CALL DAD NOW” button, and immediately the software will call your dad. Then a computerized voice will introduce itself as you and ask him a series of questions, including:

  • “An exemption and a deduction are the same thing, right?”
  • “Since I use my new laptop for work stuff, can I write it off as a work expense?”
  • “Do I file myself as a dependent because I’m still on your health insurance?”
  • “Do I get any special credits or anything since I only make $32,000 a year? That’s probably below the poverty line, right?”
  • “Does [boyfriend] count as a dependent if he’s been staying with me a lot?”
  • “Do I have to fill out two separate things for state and federal, or is it all one deal?”
  • “If I mark the wrong box, am I going to get in trouble for tax fraud?”
  • “Do you think you could just have your accountant do this for me? Didn’t he used to do it for me in high school?”
  • “Or maybe you could just do it? I promise I’ll figure out how to do it on my own next year.”

At the end of the call, the computerized voice will apologize for “putting this stuff off for so long,” explaining that things have been crazy-busy lately and that you were meaning to get to all this sooner. Then, once your dad hangs up, TurboTax processes his recorded responses through a speech-to-text algorithm and neatly presents them to you in the software—all before you even get a chance to start panicking.

The new software is even able to handle the fallout should you miss the April 15 deadline, as it is programmed to automatically call your dad and cry, “OH MY GOD, WHAT DO I DO? WHAT DO I DO? AM I GONNA GO TO JAIL? I’M SO SORRY, DAD. I DON’T KNOW HOW I LET THIS HAPPEN.”

Wow. Kudos to TurboTax for developing this seriously impressive piece of technology. Here’s hoping it makes tax season easier to bear this year.


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