Call Dave Ramsey – What to Consider When Filing My Taxes Online

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

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

Nearly all individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed.  E-filing is popular as it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

If you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS cash because its employees do not have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you could get any refund you are owed faster, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank account.

However, what about security?  And can electronic filing actually give you access to all of the forms that you may need in case you have a complex tax situation?  Are there situations when you can’t e-file?  Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it may be the best filing option for your needs.

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived . 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund procedure.

  3. Reduced chance of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there’s around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper yields.

  4. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your convenience if you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, provided that you pay from 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, provided that the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from your checking or savings account, filing 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 lead to interest and penalties.

  5. Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there’s a digital copy of your tax records.  If something happens to your paperwork, you’ll have an electronic backup.

The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those advantages — and the process of doing so is simple.

How to e-file a tax return?

The types do the math for you and provide standard advice.  You can simply do your federal return with these kinds. 

  • 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 own forms.  Some applications suppliers charge for their programs, Some are liberated.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to guide you through the completion of your forms.  
  • Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and a few providers appeal to particular demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file yields for you if they are authorized IRS e-file providers. 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.  In fact, the IRS says it anticipated over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep software.

    Is e-filing really stable?

    While e-filing is suitable, you may worry about safety — particularly with all these data breaches.  But experts agree that this is not an issue which should dissuade you by 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 information in the mail.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your data safe.  “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that require ab sessions,” Chow says.  “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”

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

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return because it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices.  Just be sure to use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so that you can make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.