Is e-filing a much better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they are largely on the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed.
When you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS money because its workers do not have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you could get any refund you’re owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
However, what about security? And can electronic filing really provide you access to all of the forms you might need if you have a complex tax situation? Are there situations when you can not e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it might be the very best filing option for your needs.
If you are Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund process.
Reduced chance of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there is around a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to cover at your convenience if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. Just be aware delaying payment after the filing due date (typically April 15) can result in interest and penalties.
Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s an electronic backup of your tax records. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you will have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those benefits — and the practice of doing so is simple.
How to e-file a tax return?
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you could have the ability to use the IRS Free File program. The forms do the math for you and offer standard guidance. You can simply do your federal return with all these kinds.
- Use an online tax preparation service or tax software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options. These options are a simple way to complete and e-file your forms. Some software suppliers charge for their apps, Some are liberated. The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to guide you through the completion of your types.
- Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields. However, eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on earnings, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups. The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but be aware this alternative is likely to be the most costly one.
Using online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it anticipated over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you may worry about security — particularly with all these data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t a problem which should dissuade you by e-filing.
“In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your information safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links “
It’s important to employ a trustworthy service to assist you record your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an internet connection which is not confidential.
For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield because it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options. Just make certain to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you can make certain the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.