Dave Ramsey Budget Envelopes – 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 on everything, but they are largely on precisely the exact 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. 

When you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS money because its employees do not need to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you could get any refund you’re owed faster, particularly if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.

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

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 

    Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll get your money in three weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.

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

  3. Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to pay at your advantage if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, as long as you pay from 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 accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

  4. Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there is an electronic copy of your tax records.  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 this is easy.

How to e-file a tax return?

  • Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you’re comfortable doing your earnings without any help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The forms do the math for you and offer standard guidance.  You can only do your federal return with these kinds. 
  • Utilize an internet tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some software providers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The software 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 will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  However, eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on earnings, and some providers appeal to particular demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file yields for you if they’re licensed IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of licensed providers, but be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Using online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of taxpayers.  Actually, the IRS says it anticipated more than 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 security — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree this is not an issue that should deter you from e-filing.

    “E-filing a tax return has turned out to be an extremely secure way to file your taxes,” states Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, marketing and sales at LegalShield. “In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your data in the mail.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of information 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 of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links “

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

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return since 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 that you use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you can make certain the information you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.