Richard Branson Space Company – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they’re mostly on 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.  E-filing is popular as it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

When you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS cash because its workers do not have to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you could get any refund you are owed faster, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

However, what about safety?  And can electronic filing actually provide you access to all of the forms that you may need if you’ve got a complex tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can not e-file?  Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and whether it may be the best filing option for your requirements.

If you’re Considering 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 digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 

    Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight months to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll get your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.

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

  3. Easy payment procedure: 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 needed, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.  Just be aware delaying payment after the filing due date (typically April 15) will lead to interest and penalties.

  4. Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital copy of your tax records.  So if something happens to your paperwork, then you will have an electronic backup.

The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those advantages — and the process of doing this is easy.

The way to e-file a tax return?

You have four options for submitting an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.

    1. Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you could have the ability to use the IRS Free File program.  The forms do the math for you and offer basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with all these forms. 
    2. Use an online tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are options.  These choices are a simple way to complete and e-file your forms.  Some software providers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and finances to steer you through the completion of your types.  
    3. Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  However, eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on income, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups.  For example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers who are 60 and older. 
    4. Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file yields for you if they are licensed IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of licensed providers, but you should be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one. 

Employing online tax preparation software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers.  Actually, 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 so many data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t a problem that should dissuade you from e-filing.

“E-filing a tax return has proven to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” states Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, marketing and revenue at LegalShield. “In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your information in the mail.”

Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data secure.  “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says.  “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections”

It is important to employ a trusted service to help you file your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or utilize an internet connection that isn’t confidential.

Bottom line

For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield since it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices.  Just be certain to use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so you can make certain the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.