Is e-filing really a much better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they’re largely on precisely the same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed.
And in return, you can find any refund you’re owed quicker, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank account.
However, what about security? And can electronic filing really provide you access to all of the forms you may need in case you’ve got a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can not e-file? Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and whether it may be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you are thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to receive a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to get your money in 3 weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund process.
Reduced likelihood of errors: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to cover at your advantage when you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital copy of your tax records. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have an electronic backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those advantages — and the process of doing so is simple.
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you could be able to use the IRS Free File program. The forms do the math for you and provide standard guidance. You can simply do your federal return with all these forms.
- Use an internet tax preparation tax or service software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options. These options are an easy way to finish and e-file your forms. Some software suppliers charge for their programs, Some are liberated. The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to guide you through the completion of your types.
- Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields. But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and some services appeal to particular demographic groups. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one.
Using online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is suitable, you could worry about security — particularly with all these data breaches. But experts agree this is not an issue that should dissuade you by e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has proven to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” states Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, advertising and revenue at LegalShield. “In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It’s important to employ a trustworthy service to help you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or utilize an internet connection that is not confidential.
For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return since it’s the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options. Just be certain to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you can ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.