Richard Branson Yacht Necker Belle – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they are largely 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 money because its workers don’t have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you could get any refund you are owed quicker, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.

But what about safety?  And can electronic filing really provide you access to all of the forms that you may need if you have a intricate tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file?  Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it may be the best filing option for your needs.

If you’re Considering e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:

  1. Quick affirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived . 
  2. Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in three weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund process.

  3. Reduced likelihood of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there’s around 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.

  4. Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your convenience if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking account or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.  Just be aware delaying payment following the filing due date (typically April 15) will lead to penalties and interest.

  5. Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically means there is a digital backup of your tax records.  If something happens to your paperwork, you will have a digital backup.

The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those benefits — and the practice of doing so is simple.

  • Free File Fillable Types — If your income is more than $72,000 and you’re comfortable doing your taxes without any assistance, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and provide basic guidance.  You can only do your federal return with all these kinds. 
  • Utilize an internet tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives.  These choices are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some software providers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your own life and finances to steer you through the completion of your forms.  
  • Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  But eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on earnings, and a few providers appeal to particular demographic groups.  For example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers that are 60 and older.  The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but be aware this alternative is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Using online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is convenient, you may be worried about security — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree that this is not a problem which should dissuade you from e-filing.

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

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

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

    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 effortless payment choices.  Just make sure to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so that you can ensure the information you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.