Is e-filing really a much better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they’re 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.
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 accounts.
But what about safety? And can electronic filing really provide you access to all of the forms that you may need if you’ve got a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file? Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it may be the very best filing option for your needs.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll get your money in three weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund procedure.
Reduced chance of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there’s approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of mistakes on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to pay at your advantage if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. And you can schedule electronic funds transfers to send the IRS what you owe on a date of your choosing again, as long as the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking account or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital backup of your tax records. If something happens to your paperwork, you will have a digital backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those advantages — and the process of doing this is simple.
The way to e-file a tax return?
You have four options for submitting an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
- Utilize IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you could have the ability to use the IRS Free File program.
- Free File Fillable Forms — If your income is more than $72,000 and you’re comfortable doing your earnings without any help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and offer standard guidance. You can only do your federal return with all these kinds.
- Use an internet tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options. These options are a simple way to complete and e-file your own forms. Some software suppliers charge for their programs, Some are liberated. The software asks you simple questions about your life and financing to guide you through the completion of your types.
- Get complimentary, in-person tax aid: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. But eligibility for free help is typically limited based on income, and some providers appeal to specific demographic groups. For example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers who are 60 and older. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one.
Employing 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 submitted through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is suitable, you may worry about safety — particularly with so many data breaches. But experts agree this is not a problem which should deter you from e-filing.
“In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network rather than exposing your data in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your information safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links “
It’s important to employ a trusted service that will assist you record 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 because it’s the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices. Just make certain to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so you may make certain the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.