Is e-filing really a much better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they are largely on the exact same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.
Nearly all individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed. E-filing is popular because it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
And in return, you can get any refund you’re owed faster, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
However, what about safety? And can electronic filing really give you access to all the forms you may need in case you’ve got 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 might be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within one day of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in three weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there is around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of mistakes on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper yields.
Easy 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, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. You also have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically means there’s an electronic backup of your tax records. If something happens to your paperwork, you’ll have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those benefits — and the process of doing so is easy.
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you may be able to use the IRS Free File program. The forms do the math for you and offer basic advice. You can only do your federal return with these forms.
- Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options. These choices are an easy way to finish and e-file your forms. Some applications providers charge for their programs, Some are free. The program asks you simple questions about your own life and finances to steer 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 yields. But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and a few providers cater to specific demographic groups. For instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers that are 60 and older. The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but you should be aware this alternative is likely to be the most costly one.
Using online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it anticipated more than four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is convenient, you could be worried about safety — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree that this is not a problem that should dissuade you from e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has turned out to be an extremely secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, marketing and revenue at LegalShield. “In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network rather than exposing your data in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your data safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links “
It’s important to employ a trusted service that will assist you record your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or utilize an online connection that isn’t confidential.
For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield because it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options. Just be certain that you use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so that you can make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.