Dave Ramsey Core – Is It Best To E-File My Taxes?

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

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

The majority of individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed. 

If you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS cash because its employees do not have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you can get any refund you are owed quicker, particularly if you have it directly deposited into your bank account.

However, what about safety?  And can digital filing really provide you access to all the forms you may need if you’ve got a intricate 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 very best filing option for your requirements.

If you’re thinking about e-filing, some 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. 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll get your money in 3 weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.

  3. Reduced chance of mistakes: According to the IRS, there is 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 information on problems discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.

  4. Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your advantage if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline.  Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. 

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

The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those benefits — and the practice of doing so is easy.

The types do the math for you and offer basic advice.  You can simply do your federal return with all these forms. 

  • Use an online tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are an easy way to complete and e-file your own forms.  Some applications suppliers charge for their programs, Some are free.   The software asks you simple questions about your own life and finances to guide you through the completion of your types.  
  • Get free, 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 services cater to specific demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re licensed IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of licensed providers, but you should be aware this alternative is likely to be the most costly one. 

    Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers.  Actually, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is convenient, you could be worried about safety — especially with so many data breaches.  But experts agree this is not a problem which should dissuade you by e-filing.

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

    Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data safe.  “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says.  “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”

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

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options.  Just make certain that you use tax planning software from a trusted source, so that you can ensure the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.