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

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

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

In return, you can find any refund you’re owed faster, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

However, what about security?  And can digital filing actually provide you access to all the forms you may need in case you have a intricate tax situation?  Are there situations when you can’t e-file?  Let’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing option for your requirements.

If you are Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:

  1. Quick confirmation your forms are received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 
  2. Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll get your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.

  3. Reduced likelihood of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there is approximately 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.

  4. Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your convenience if you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from your checking or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is a digital copy of your tax records.  If something happens to your paperwork, then you will have a digital backup.

The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those benefits — and the practice of doing so is simple.

  • Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your taxes without help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and offer standard guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with all these forms. 
  • Use an online tax preparation tax or service 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 liberated.   The program asks you simple questions about your 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.  However, eligibility for free help is typically limited based on earnings, and some services cater to specific demographic groups.  For instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers who are 60 and older.  The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Using online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it anticipated more than four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is suitable, you may be worried about safety — particularly with so many data breaches.  But experts agree this isn’t an issue which should deter you from e-filing.

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

    Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your information safe.  “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says.  “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections”

    It is important to employ a trustworthy service that will help you file your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a public computer or use an internet connection that is not private.

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield since it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options.  Just make sure to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you can make certain the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.