Dave Ramsey Budget Forms Spreadsheet – Is It Best To E-File My Taxes?

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

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

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

And in return, you can get any refund you’re owed quicker, especially if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.

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

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

  1. Quick affirmation your forms are received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 

    Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll receive your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.

  2. 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% rate of mistakes on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.

  3. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to cover at your convenience when you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, as long as you pay by 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 using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

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

The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those benefits — and the practice of doing this is simple.

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

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

  • Utilize an internet tax preparation service or tax software: Tax prep software and online filing services are options.  These choices are a simple way to complete and e-file your forms.  Some applications providers charge for their programs, 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 aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  But eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on earnings, and some services cater to specific demographic groups.  The IRS maintains a database of licensed providers, but you should be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Employing online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  Actually, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really secure?

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

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

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

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

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield 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 you can make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.