Richard Branson Cribs Episode – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they are mostly on 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. 

If 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. And in return, you can get any refund you’re owed quicker, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank account.

But what about security?  And can electronic filing really give you access to all of the forms that you may need if you’ve got a complex tax situation?  Are there situations when you can not e-file?  Let’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it might be the very best filing choice for your requirements.

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 was received within 24 hours of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that 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 three 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 around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of mistakes on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper yields.

  4. Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your convenience when you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay later if necessary, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  And you’re able to 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 option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from your checking account or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s an electronic backup of your tax records.  So 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 practice of doing so is easy.

The way to e-file a tax return?

The types do the math for you and offer basic guidance.  You can only do your federal return with these kinds. 

  • Use an internet tax preparation service or tax software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are an easy way to complete and e-file your own forms.  Some applications suppliers charge for their programs, Some are liberated.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing 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 typically limited based on earnings, and some providers appeal to particular demographic groups.  The IRS maintains a record of licensed providers, but be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep software.

    Is e-filing really stable?

    While e-filing is suitable, you could be worried about security — particularly with all these data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t an issue which should deter you by e-filing.

    “E-filing a tax return has proven to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, marketing and revenue 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 information in the email.”

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

    It’s very important to use a trustworthy service that will help you file your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a public computer or utilize an online connection which isn’t confidential.

    Bottom line

    For most 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 effortless payment choices.  Just make sure to use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so that you may ensure the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.