Is e-filing really a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they’re largely on precisely the exact 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 because it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
In return, you can find any refund you’re owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank account.
But what about security? And can digital filing actually provide you access to all of the forms you might need in case you’ve got a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can’t 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:
- Quick affirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given 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 procedure.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there’s around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Easy payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to pay at your convenience if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. And you can schedule electronic money transfers to send the IRS what you owe on a date of your choosing — again, provided that the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically implies there’s an electronic backup 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 get those benefits — and the process of doing this is simple.
How to e-file a tax return?
The forms do the math for you and provide basic guidance. You can only do your federal return with all these forms.
Using online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it anticipated over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is convenient, you could worry about safety — particularly with so many data breaches. But experts agree that this is not an issue which should dissuade you by e-filing.
“In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your data in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your data secure. “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It is very important to employ a trustworthy service to help you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an online connection that isn’t private.
For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return since it’s the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options. Just be certain to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you may make certain the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.