Edward Cooper Tony Robbins – Is It Best To E-File My Taxes?

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

Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they are mostly on the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.

Nearly all individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed. 

In return, you can get any refund you are owed faster, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.

However, what about safety?  And can digital filing actually provide you access to all of the forms you may need in case you have a complex tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can not e-file?  Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and whether it may be the best filing option for your needs.

If you’re thinking about e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:

  1. Quick confirmation your forms are received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within one day of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 

    Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight months to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund process.

  2. Reduced chance of errors: In accordance with 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 yields compared with paper yields.

  3. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your convenience when you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay later if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline.  Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from the checking or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. 

  4. Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital backup of your tax documents.  If something happens to your paperwork, then you will have an electronic backup.

The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those benefits — and the process of doing this is easy.

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 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 only do your federal return with these kinds. 
  • Utilize an online tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options.  These options are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some software suppliers charge for their programs, 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 help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  However, eligibility for free help is typically limited based on income, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups.  For instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers who are 60 and older.  The IRS maintains a database of licensed 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 expected over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is suitable, you may be worried about security — particularly with all these data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t a problem that should deter you from e-filing.

    “E-filing a tax return has proven to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, advertising and sales at LegalShield. “In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your information in the mail.”

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

    It’s important to use a trustworthy service that will assist you record your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an online connection which is not confidential.

    Bottom line

    For many 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 choices.  Just be sure to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you can make certain the information you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.