This iPad app can reduce your tax bill

Upping your IRA contributions — and getting the tax break — have never been easier

Mar 2, 2012 @ 3:16 pm

By Lavonne Kuykendall

Just in time for the 2012 tax season: Filers can now use their iPads to help limit the Internal Revenue Service's take.

How? By taking a picture of a check and then depositing it electronically into their Fidelity Investments IRA up to the close of markets April 17.

The technology for taking a picture with a smart phone and making an electronic deposit has been around for awhile. But Fidelity is the first of the large custodians to offer the same capability on Apple mobile devices. Fidelity said it wants to make it easier for those who use an iPad to prepare their taxes to make a last-minute deposit into an IRA. That, in turn, helps reduce a filer's taxes.

Waiting until the last minute to make a tax-deductible deposit is a time-honored tradition. Fidelity said it receives about 45% of its annual IRA contributions in the 28 days before the tax deadline.

The Charles Schwab Corp.'s mobile deposit apps for smart phones have been very popular, but the company hasn't received much demand for mobile deposit on an iPad, said Schwab spokeswoman Jennifer Davis via email. "We are also looking into adding this feature once iPad technology evolves to include a 2 mega-pixel camera, which we think will provide for a much better client experience," she said.

A TD Ameritrade Inc. spokeswoman said the company continues to build out its mobile capabilities.

Pershing LLC did not immediately respond to a request for information about their iPad development plans.

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