Is e-filing really a much better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they’re mostly on precisely the exact 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.
When you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS money because its employees don’t need to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you can get any refund you’re owed quicker, particularly if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.
But what about security? And can digital filing really give you access to all the forms you might need if you’ve got a intricate tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can not e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it might be the very best filing option for your needs.
If you’re Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms are received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been 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 months to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund procedure.
Reduced chance of errors: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of mistakes on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Easy payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to pay at your convenience if you e-file. It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if necessary, provided that you pay by 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. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there is 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 opt to e-file and find those advantages — and the process of doing so is easy.
The way to e-file a tax return?
You have four choices for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you may have the ability to use the IRS Free File program. The types do the math for you and provide basic guidance. You can only do your federal return with all these forms.
- Use an internet tax preparation tax or service software: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives. These options are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms. Some applications suppliers charge for their programs, Some are free. The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to guide you through the completion of your types.
- Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. However, eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups. For instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers who are 60 and older. The IRS maintains a database of licensed providers, but be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one.
Using online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you could be worried about security — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree that this isn’t an issue that should dissuade you from 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 information in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your information safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It is very important to use a trustworthy service that will help you record your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or utilize an internet connection that is not confidential.
For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return since it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options. Just be certain that you use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you may ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.