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Helping Canadians find free tax-filing options

In March 2023, I released TaxGPT: a friendly AI-infused chatbot to give Canadians advice on how to file their taxes for free.

TaxGPT draws upon existing government research, which found that people often lack confidence to file on their own: perceiving the process as overly complex, with a high chance of facing financial or legal penalties if making a mistake. TaxGPT introduces Canadians to taxes in an approachable conversational format, using plain language and affirming statements to recommend relevant methods to file taxes for free.

The site itself is built in Next.js, and the “chat” part of it is based on a script that I wrote and put together with Typebot. I spent some time testing out ChatGPT, eventually finding it wasn’t accurate enough for a full conversation, but it is pretty good at providing general advice. Users can ask tax-related questions to TaxGPT which returns an answer via the ChatGPT API.

TaxGPT answered over 10,000 questions during 2023’s tax-filing season (February 20 — May 1, 2023), and even made it into the National Post: “Ottawa developer designs chatbot to help Canadians file their taxes for free”. Overall, TaxGPT generated plenty of interest, unexpected publicity, and furthered Canada’s conversation about simpler tax filing.

The cute maple leaf is a Tyler Benning original.