Phil Collins Richard Branson – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

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

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

If you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS cash because its employees do not have to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you can find any refund you’re owed quicker, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank account.

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

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within one day of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that 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 process.

  2. Reduced likelihood of errors: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate 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 process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to cover at your advantage when you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

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

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

The way to e-file a tax return?

    1. Utilize IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you may be able to use the IRS Free File program.  The forms do the math for you and provide basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with all these kinds. 
    2. Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some applications providers charge for their programs, Some are liberated.   The software asks you simple questions about your own life and financing to steer you through the completion of your forms.  
    3. Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and some providers cater to specific demographic groups. 
    4. Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one. 

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

Is e-filing really secure?

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

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

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

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

Bottom line

For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield because it is 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 that you use tax planning software from a trusted source, so that you can make certain the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.