Credit Karma and TurboTax: How they work together

A couple seated at a table use a laptop and mobile phone while filing their taxes online.Image: A couple seated at a table use a laptop and mobile phone while filing their taxes online.
Editorial Note: Intuit Credit Karma receives compensation from third-party advertisers, but that doesn’t affect our editors’ opinions. Our third-party advertisers don’t review, approve or endorse our editorial content. Information about financial products not offered on Credit Karma is collected independently. Our content is accurate to the best of our knowledge when posted.

Credit Karma and TurboTax — both owned by parent company Intuit — offer a variety of tools and features that can help you manage your taxes and overall financial picture.

Both companies can also help you access cash quickly during tax season. We’ll review your options and how they work.

How TurboTax works with Credit Karma

Simplified tax filing

If you’re filing your taxes with TurboTax, the process is easier as a Credit Karma member. That’s because information from your Credit Karma account can be used to prefill your tax documents.  

Straightforward account creation

Credit Karma members will find a straightforward authentication process that links their existing account to TurboTax. By sharing its data with TurboTax, Credit Karma gives members the benefit of creating an account quickly and easily.

Special pricing and offers

Certain Credit Karma members who file their taxes using TurboTax through the Credit Karma app have access to special offers and pricing for tax filing — including features like Audit Defense, which represents filers in case of a state or IRS audit. 

Finding TurboTax in the Credit Karma app

To access TurboTax within the Credit Karma app, navigate to “Income and Taxes” from the three-line menu icon to find “Tax tools.” Then click on “File taxes” for an embedded version of TurboTax. Signing into TurboTax through Credit Karma keeps you within the Credit Karma app the whole time.

Early access to your refund

txed_ckturbotax-1-wipImage: txed_ckturbotax-1-wip

Early refund options

Refund Advance loan from TurboTax

If you’re already an e-filer with TurboTax for your federal return, you could be eligible for a TurboTax Refund Advance — a short-term, no-cost loan.

You’ll have to apply, as with any other loan, but if approved, you’ll receive a portion of your anticipated refund, up to $4,000, in your Credit Karma Money™ Spend account — which is free to open if you don’t already have one.

When you file electronically, it’ll typically take 24 to 48 hours for the IRS to accept your return — and most filers receive their Refund Advance within 15 minutes of IRS acceptance.

You’ll be notified when your funds are available and can use Credit Karma’s mobile app to access your funds right away. You’ll also be sent a physical Credit Karma Visa® Debit Card. Note that Refund Advance may not be available for all tax filers everywhere. You’ll want to check out the full terms and conditions before you apply.

txed_ckturbotax-2-wipImage: txed_ckturbotax-2-wip

Early refund access with Credit Karma Money™

Credit Karma members can get access to their tax refund up to five days early when they deposit it into their Credit Karma Money™ Spend account — no matter who prepares your taxes.

But you can’t double-down: If you file with TurboTax and choose to pay your tax preparation fee using your federal tax refund or take advantage of TurboTax Refund Advance, you’re ineligible for early refund access through Credit Karma.

More tax tools

Here are some other Credit Karma tools that can help you keep track of your filing status during tax season or help work on your finances.

Refund Tracker

If you created a new Credit Karma account or linked an existing one while filing your taxes through TurboTax — and you consented to data sharing — you can monitor the status of both your federal and state tax refunds on Credit Karma. 

The Refund Tracker appears soon after you file your federal tax return with TurboTax. When you want to take a look, you can log in to your Credit Karma account.

The IRS issues most refunds within 21 days of accepting your return, though it’s possible your tax return may require additional review and take longer to process.

If you’d prefer to get your information directly from the IRS, the agency maintains a refund tracker called “Where’s My Refund.” Although you’ll need some basic information and a bit of patience, you can start checking your refund’s status as early as 24 hours after the IRS accepts your e-filed return.

Tax Refund Estimator

Credit Karma’s Tax Refund Estimator can help you estimate your federal tax refund based on the information you provide about your income, deductions and credits.

Although the tool has been created for educational purposes only to give you a ballpark figure, you might be able to get an idea about your tax situation. This tool does not prepare or file your taxes for you.

It’s always a good idea to consult a tax professional for personalized advice on your taxes.

About the author: Brad Hanson is a senior editor at Credit Karma. His 30 years of experience in print and digital media includes work for the Los Angeles Times-Washington Post News Service, and Polyvore. Most recently before… Read more.