Dave Ramsey Picture – What to Consider When Filing My Taxes Online

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

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

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

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

But what about security?  And can electronic filing actually give you access to all of the forms that you might need in case you have a intricate tax situation?  Are there situations when you can’t e-file?  Let’s look at the advantages 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 obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 

    Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund process.

  2. Reduced likelihood of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there’s approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more information on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper yields.

  3. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your convenience when you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if necessary, 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, provided that the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from your 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.

  4. Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically implies there’s 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 find those benefits — and the process of doing so is simple.

The way to e-file a tax return?

The forms do the math for you and provide standard guidance.  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 options.  These choices are a simple way to finish and e-file your own forms.  Some applications providers charge for their programs, Some are liberated.   The program 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 aid is typically limited based on income, and some services appeal to specific demographic groups. 
  • 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 alternative is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Using online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of 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 stable?

    While e-filing is suitable, you may be worried about safety — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t an issue that should deter you from e-filing.

    “In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your data in the mail.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data secure.  “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that need ab 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 record your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a public computer or use an online connection which isn’t confidential.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield since it’s 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 trusted source, so you may ensure the information you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.