Dave Ramsey Intro Song – What to Consider When Filing My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they’re mostly on precisely the 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. 

In return, you can find any refund you are owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank account.

But what about security?  And can digital filing really provide you access to all the forms you may need in case you’ve got 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 very best filing option for your requirements.

If you’re thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:

  1. Quick affirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within one day of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 
  2. 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 get your money in three weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund process.

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

  4. Easy payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your advantage if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline.  You also have the option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from the checking account or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.  Just be aware delaying payment following the filing due date (typically April 15) can lead to interest and penalties.

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

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

How to e-file a tax return?

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

    1. Utilize IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you could be able to use the IRS Free File program.  The types do the math for you and offer standard guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with these kinds. 
    2. Utilize an online tax preparation service or tax software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options.  These choices are an easy way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some applications suppliers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to guide you through the completion of your types.  
    3. 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 typically limited based on income, and a few services appeal to particular demographic groups. 
    4. Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they are authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but you should be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one. 

      Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.

      Is e-filing really secure?

      While e-filing is convenient, you could worry about security — especially with so many data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t an issue which should dissuade you by e-filing.

      “E-filing a tax return has proven to be an extremely secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, advertising and revenue at LegalShield. “In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network rather than exposing your information in the email.”

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

      It’s important to employ a trusted service to help you file your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or utilize an internet connection that is not confidential.

      Bottom line

      For many taxpayers, it makes sense 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 effortless payment choices.  Just be certain that you use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so that you can ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.