Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they’re largely on the 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 conserve the IRS cash because its workers don’t need to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you could find any refund you’re owed faster, particularly if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
But what about security? And can electronic filing really provide you access to all of the forms that you might need if you have a complex tax situation? Are there situations when you can not e-file? Let’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it may be the best filing option for your requirements.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll receive your money in three weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there’s around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to cover at your convenience if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. And you can schedule electronic funds transfers to easily send the IRS what you owe on a date of your choosing — again, as long as the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. You also have the choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. Just be aware delaying payment after the filing due date (typically April 15) can lead to interest and penalties.
Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically implies there is a digital 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 process of doing so is easy.
How to e-file a tax return?
You have four options for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
Using online tax preparation 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 may worry about security — especially with so many data breaches. But experts agree that this is not a problem that should dissuade you from e-filing.
“In fact, it can 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 email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your data safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that require ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It is very important to employ a trustworthy service to assist you record your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an internet connection which isn’t confidential.
For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return 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 make certain to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you can ensure the information you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.