Dave Ramsey Total Money Makeover Audiobook – What to Consider When Filing My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS might not agree on 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 filed to the IRS are e-filed.  E-filing is a favorite as it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

When you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS cash because its workers don’t have to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you could find any refund you are owed quicker, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

However, what about safety?  And can electronic filing actually give you access to all of the forms that you might 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 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 affirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived safely. 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.

  3. Reduced chance of mistakes: According to the IRS, there’s around a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of mistakes on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper yields.

  4. Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to pay at your convenience if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline.  Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital copy of your tax records.  If something happens to your paperwork, you will have a digital backup.

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

How to e-file a tax return?

You have four choices for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.

  • Free File Fillable Forms — If your income is more than $72,000 and you’re comfortable doing your earnings without help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The forms do the math for you and provide basic advice.  You can only do your federal return with all these kinds. 
  • Utilize an online tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax preparation 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 apps, Some are free.   The software asks you simple questions about your own life and financing to guide 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 returns.  But eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on earnings, and a few providers appeal to specific demographic groups.  For instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers that are 60 and older.  The IRS maintains a database of licensed providers, but you should be aware this alternative is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Employing online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it expected over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really stable?

    While e-filing is convenient, you may be worried about safety — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree that this is not an issue 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, advertising and sales at LegalShield. “In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your information in the email.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data secure.  “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says.  “All this is routed over TLS encrypted connections.”

    It’s important to employ a trusted service to assist you file your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or utilize an online connection that isn’t confidential.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield because it’s the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options.  Just be sure that you use tax planning software from a dependable source, so you can ensure the information you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.