National Archives Warren Buffett – What to Consider When Filing My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they are largely on precisely the exact 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 find any refund you are owed faster, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

But what about security?  And can digital filing really 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’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it may be the very best filing choice for your needs.

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of digital 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 may take six to eight months to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll receive your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund procedure.

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

  4. Simple payment procedure: 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 later if necessary, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline.  And you’re able to schedule electronic funds transfers to 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 choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

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

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

How to e-file a tax return?

The forms do the math for you and provide standard guidance.  You can only do your federal return with these kinds. 

  • Utilize an internet tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives.  These choices are an easy way to complete and e-file your own forms.  Some applications providers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to steer you through the completion of your forms.  
  • Get free, in-person tax aid: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  But eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on earnings, and a few providers cater to specific demographic groups.  By way of instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers that are 60 and older. 
  • 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 authorized providers, but be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one. 

    Employing 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 submitted through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is suitable, you could be worried about security — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree this isn’t a problem that should dissuade you by e-filing.

    “In fact, 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 email.”

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

    It is important to employ a trusted service to assist you record your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an online connection that is not private.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return since it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options.  Just be certain that you use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so you may make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.