Goalcast Warren Buffett – What to Consider When Filing My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they are largely on the same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.

Nearly all individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed.  E-filing is a favorite because it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

When you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS cash because its workers do not need to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you could find any refund you are owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

But what about safety?  And can digital filing actually give you access to all of the forms you may need in case you’ve got a intricate tax situation?  Are there situations when you can’t e-file?  Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing option for your needs.

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in three weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.

  3. Reduced chance of errors: 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 information on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.

  4. Easy 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, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  And you’re able to schedule electronic funds transfers to easily send the IRS what you owe on a date of your choosing — again, as long as the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking 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 following the filing due date (typically April 15) will lead to interest and penalties.

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

The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those benefits — and the practice 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 are comfortable doing your taxes without any assistance, 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. 
  • Use an online tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are an easy way to complete and e-file your own forms.  Some software providers charge for their programs, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and finances to steer you through the completion of your types.  
  • Get complimentary, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  However, eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and some services cater to specific demographic groups.  The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but you should be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Using online tax preparation software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it anticipated over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really secure?

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

    “E-filing a tax return has turned out to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, marketing and sales at LegalShield. “In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private 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 put security measures in place to keep your information secure.  “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that require ab sessions,” Chow says.  “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links “

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

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it is sensible 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 sure that you use tax planning software from a trusted source, so that you may ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.