Is e-filing really a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they are largely on precisely the exact same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed.
If you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS money because its workers do not need to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you can get any refund you’re owed faster, particularly if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
However, what about security? And can digital filing actually 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’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it might be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you are thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in three weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: According to the IRS, there’s around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier 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 funds transfers to easily send the IRS what you owe on a date of your choosing — again, as long as the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from the checking or savings account, submitting 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’s 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 decide to e-file and get those advantages — and the practice of doing this is simple.
The way to e-file a tax return?
The forms do the math for you and provide basic advice. You can only do your federal return with these forms.
Employing online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you could be worried about safety — particularly with so many data breaches. But experts agree that this is not an issue which should dissuade you from 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 direction, marketing and revenue at LegalShield. “In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network rather than exposing your information in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your data safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It is important to employ a trusted service that will assist you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or utilize an internet connection that is not confidential.
For many taxpayers, it makes sense 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 preparation software from a trusted source, so you can make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.