Is e-filing really a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they are largely on the exact same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.
Nearly all individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed.
And in return, you can find any refund you are owed faster, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
But what about safety? And can digital filing actually give you access to all of the forms that you might need if you’ve got a intricate tax situation? Are there situations when you can’t e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it may be the very best filing option for your requirements.
If you’re Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to get your money in 3 weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.
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 mistakes on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper yields.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your advantage if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if necessary, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct 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. Just be aware delaying payment following the filing due date (typically April 15) can result in interest and penalties.
Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is a digital copy of your tax records. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you will have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those benefits — and the practice of doing so is easy.
Employing online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is suitable, you may be worried about security — especially with so many data breaches. But experts agree this is not a problem that should deter you by e-filing.
“In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your information in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your data safe. “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It’s very important to employ a trusted service that will help you record your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an online connection which is not confidential.
For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options. Just be sure to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so you can make certain the information you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.