Dale Carnegie Blog – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

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

Nearly all individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed. 

If you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS money because its workers don’t need to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you can find any refund you are owed quicker, especially if you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

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

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within one day 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 be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund procedure.

  3. 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 returns compared with paper returns.

  4. Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your advantage when you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline.  And you’re able to schedule electronic money 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. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically means there is an electronic copy of your tax records.  So if something happens to your paperwork, you’ll have a digital backup.

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

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

    1. 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. 
    2. Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your earnings without assistance, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and offer basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with all these forms. 
    3. Use an internet tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are a simple way to finish and e-file your own forms.  Some software suppliers charge for their programs, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your own life and financing to guide you through the completion of your types.  
    4. Get complimentary, in-person tax aid: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  However, eligibility for free help is typically limited based on income, and a few providers appeal to specific demographic groups.  The IRS maintains a record of licensed providers, but you should be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one. 

      Employing online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it anticipated more than four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.

      Is e-filing really stable?

      While e-filing is convenient, you may worry about safety — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree this isn’t an issue which should deter you from e-filing.

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

      Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data secure.  “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says.  “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links .”

      It’s important to employ a trusted service to assist you file 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 because it’s 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 you may ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.