Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they’re 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. E-filing is popular because it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
When you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS money because its employees don’t have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you can find any refund you’re owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.
However, what about safety? And can digital filing really give you access to all of the forms you may need if you’ve got a intricate tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file? Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it might be the very best filing choice for your requirements.
If you’re Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms are received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll receive your money in 3 weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund process.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: According to the IRS, there is around a 1% error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% speed of mistakes on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your convenience if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if necessary, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. And you can schedule electronic funds 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 Immediate pay service from your checking account or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. Just be aware delaying payment following the filing due date (typically April 15) will lead to interest and penalties.
Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there is an electronic backup of your tax records. If something happens to your paperwork, you will have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those benefits — and the process of doing this is easy.
How to e-file a tax return?
The forms do the math for you and offer basic advice. You can only do your federal return with all these kinds.
Using online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it anticipated over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you could worry about security — especially with so many data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t an issue which should dissuade you from e-filing.
“In fact, it can 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 that the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your data secure. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says. “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections.”
It’s important to employ a trustworthy service that will assist you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or utilize an online connection that isn’t private.
For many 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 options. Just make certain that you use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so that you may make certain the information you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.