of the Month: Essential Links to Taxes
Susan B. Anders
2005 - Essential Links to Taxes (www.el.com/elinks/taxes)
is one of several “reference” web portals covered
by Essential Links, which bills itself as the “Metaportal
to the Internet.” While Essential Links to Taxes performs
a function similar to the Yahoo Tax Center (reviewed in
January 2004), it offers different resources that provide
value specifically for tax professionals. Some links are
not commonly found on other web portals.This website also
offers links to other tax-related portals such as LookSmart,
GovSpot, About, and Taxsites.
Links to Taxes is a free website, paid by advertising sponsors,
banner advertisements, and “featured website”
advertisements. While this website avoids pop-up advertisements,
some sponsoring sites do not. Featured websites open in
a separate window, while other sites open in the same window.
When navigating within the site, note that the “home”
button leads to the general-interest Essential Links parent
major navigational tool is the “categories”
listing on the left-hand vertical index on all of the Essential
Links to Taxes main pages. The center of the tax homepage
replicates the index, but also includes hyperlinks to featured
websites in each category. Some category assignments are
awkward and inconsistent, with useful resources appearing
under unexpected categories. Additionally, a few linked
resources are out of date or have substantially changed.
Links to Taxes has a quiet, albeit eccentric, charm, and
after persistent probing, it became apparent that this site
is a useful tool for tax practitioners. It offers a large
number of professionally oriented resources, such as tax
law and tax code, in addition to materials that would interest
website offers connections to tax form and publication providers
under several different categories. “Major tax sites”
offers links to FedWorld for archived IRS forms and publications,
Uncle Fed’s Tax Board, and the IRS’s homepage.
The “tax forms” category provides connections,
which include the forms and publications pages on websites
for the IRS, MSN Money Central, Uncle Fed’s Tax Forms,
and 1040.com. The “regional and local” category
provides state tax forms via websites that link to state
tax departments, and nongovernmental sites such as Tax and
Accounting Sites Directory (located under State and Local
Taxes), Sister States Tax Directory, and the Federation
of Tax Administrators.
practitioners can find legal tax research help under the
“tax law” and “tax code” categories.
Tax law links include Legalbitstream, Thomas (the Library
of Congress legislative website), and the Joint Committee
on Taxation. Other resources include the University of Oklahoma
Links to Tax Law page and ERI Distance Learning Center’s
Employment Law page. Tax code links include the Legal Information
Institute (Cornell University), as well as the U.S. House
of Representatives (located under US Tax Code On-Line).
Links to Taxes offers connections to several tax-related
investor websites. Many are found under “major tax
sites,” but others appear under a variety of categories.
The links include SaveWealth.com and the Yahoo Tax Center,
as well as the tax homepages for InvestorGuide University,
MSN Money Central, and SmartMoney.com.
“tax related news” category features a mix of
sources that appeal to both taxpayers and professionals.
The professional-oriented links include Tax Analysts, Electronic
Accountant, and the IRS Newsroom. A link to Tax Analysts’
Tax History Project can be found under “miscellaneous.”
The “link lists” category includes links to
Jeeves, LookSmart, and Google. The “commercial tax
sites,” “software,” “tax tools and
utilities,” and “tax discussions” categories
appear to be geared more for individual taxpayers, but professionals
may find some interesting resources.
B. Anders, PhD, CPA, is an associate professor at
St. Bonaventure University, N.Y.