David Ramsey Dexter – 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 largely on precisely the 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 a favorite as it is 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 can find any refund you are owed quicker, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.

But what about security?  And can electronic filing really give you access to all of 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 best filing choice for your needs.

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

  1. Quick affirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived . 
  2. Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund process.

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

  4. Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to cover at your advantage when you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, 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 accounts, filing 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 result in interest and penalties.

  5. Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically implies there is a digital backup of your tax documents.  So if something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have a digital backup.

The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those advantages — and the practice of doing this is easy.

How to e-file a tax return?

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

The types do the math for you and offer basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with all these forms. 

  • Utilize an internet tax preparation tax or service software: Tax prep software and online filing services are options.  These options are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some applications suppliers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The software asks you simple questions about your own life and finances to steer you through the completion of your forms.  
  • Get free, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  However, eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on earnings, and some services appeal to particular demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re licensed IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a database of licensed providers, but be aware this alternative is very likely to be the most costly one. 

    Employing online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers.  Actually, the IRS says it anticipated over four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is suitable, you may worry about security — particularly with so many data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t a problem which should dissuade you by e-filing.

    “In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your data in the email.”

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

    It’s important to employ a trustworthy service to assist you record your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an internet connection that isn’t confidential.

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield since it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices.  Just make certain that you use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you may ensure the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.