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This is a question about TurboTax desktop functionality, not a tax issue. I am new to TurboTax this year, having used TaxACT for the last decade.

I would like to enter different scenarios for future years to see what my marginal tax rate may be. I want to avoid triggering additional net invest income tax through capital gains. And also use "lumpy" charitable contributions to alternate with standard deductions.

I could of course create dummy returns for the current year and try the scenarios, but that seems to be a lot of work.

TaxACT has a form where you can enter your estimates for two future years. Basically the current year's data is prefilled for the next two years, and you can adjust any numbers you like, eg. increase LTCG or charitable deductions. This way several scenarios can be tried by changing a few entries.

I have tried googling, but most of the pages returned are for estimated taxes (1040-ES) calculations for next year, which is not what I need.

I am also wary of using online calculators for privacy reasons and most are too simplistic anyway.

Anyone here knows how to do whatif scenarios for future years in TurboTax desktop edition?

Thanks in advance for your help.
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I switched to HR Block software a few years back and now they also make it difficult to forecast future years. Sounds like Tax Act may be something to look at.

I have done future cast in TT years ago and in HR-Block after that.
They have both curtailed the forecasting. Years ago I would buy TT and use it for year one, and then use the forecast to fill out paper returns the following year. Only paid them every other year.

Since the tax code seems to change every year now, that is not recommended.

I now use HR to forecast by running Mock future returns with their software.
Important to make backups of your tax files before trying this.

I take my 2020 file, Open HR and then edit amounts to figure what 2021 will look like. I then save these to PDF and rename them as MOCK-2021, etc.

Close software and put copy of your tax file back in as the original. Make sure it goes into the default folder for the software.

I have also used an online 1040 calculator and have gotten good results. I like this one.
Google search - guidestone 1040 tax calculator

I input all my parameters, run the report and save that as a PDF. Quick and easy to use. The PDF can be renamed to keep track of your scenarios.
You can edit the numbers, run the report each time and save the PDF. Rename them as you go. No personal info is input. Just know that google is watching. I use these cautiously.
I use a VPN and run the search in a google incognito page.
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Mike2020R , thanks for your detailed reply with a number of useful suggestions.

I tried Guidestone calculator and it is a pretty decent one. Of course I have to type in my data each time I use the calculator, as I am unwilling to create a login or store my data online.

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I leave the guidestone web page open. Run the report and save to PDF, then I just change some numbers and run the report again, Save as a different name PDF. I don't clear it to start from scratch each time. I also do not save anything on their website, No account their either.

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Perhaps I misunderstand the question; I think the answer is easy/trivial. Once your 2020 return is done, simply duplicate your 2020 return and then use the duplicate to try your what-ifs. To duplicate your return, simply click on File, then Save As, and give it some new name.

I like to create a duplicate with the name something like "2020 Original Copy", and then make copies from THAT. That way I know I won't mistakenly mess up the real thing. But this is about as easy as a thing can be. Just duplicate your final return and then go in and make changes to the duplicate(s).

Hope this helps.
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