Brian Tracy Time Management – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes? 

Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they are mostly on precisely the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.

The majority of individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed. 

In return, you could get any refund you’re owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.

But what about safety?  And can electronic filing really give you access to all of the forms you might need if you’ve got a complex tax situation?  Are there situations when you can’t e-file?  Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and whether it might be the best filing option for your needs.

If you’re thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:

  1. Quick affirmation 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 your forms have arrived . 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight months to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll get your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.

  3. Reduced likelihood of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there is around a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more information on problems discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.

  4. Easy payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your advantage if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if needed, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  And you can schedule electronic money transfers to easily 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 Immediate pay service from your checking or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is an electronic copy of your tax records.  So if something happens to your paperwork, you will have an electronic backup.

The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those advantages — and the practice of doing this is easy.

You have four choices for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.

  • Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your taxes without help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and provide basic guidance.  You can only do your federal return with all these forms. 
  • Use an online tax preparation tax or service software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options.  These choices are a simple way to finish and e-file your own forms.  Some software providers charge for their programs, Some are liberated.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to steer you through the completion of your types.  
  • Get free, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  But eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on income, and a few services cater to particular demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of licensed providers, but you should be aware this option 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 submitted through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really stable?

    While e-filing is convenient, you could worry about safety — particularly with so many data breaches.  But experts agree this is not a problem that should dissuade you by e-filing.

    “In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your data in the mail.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your information secure.  “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says.  “All of this is routed over TLS encrypted connections”

    It’s important to use a trusted service that will help you record your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or utilize an online connection that is not private.

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return since it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment choices.  Just make certain to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you can ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.