Selectquote Suze Orman – Is It Best To E-File My Taxes?

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

Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they are largely on the 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 a favorite because it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

In return, you can get any refund you’re owed quicker, particularly if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.

But what about security?  And can digital filing actually give you access to all of the forms you might need if you have a intricate tax situation?  Are there situations when you can’t e-file?  Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it may be the best filing choice for your requirements.

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within one day of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 
  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’ll get your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.

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

  4. Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to cover at your advantage when 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 making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from your checking account or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there’s an electronic copy of your tax documents.  If something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have a digital backup.

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

  • Free File Fillable Forms — If your income is more than $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your earnings without help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The forms do the math for you and provide basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with these forms. 
  • Use an internet tax preparation tax or service software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options.  These choices are an easy way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some software suppliers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to guide 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 yields.  But eligibility for free help is typically limited based on earnings, and some services cater to particular demographic groups.  The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but you should be aware this alternative is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Using online tax prep 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 software.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is suitable, you may worry about safety — particularly with so many data breaches.  But experts agree this is not an issue that should deter you from e-filing.

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

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

    It is important to use a trusted service to assist you file your taxes.  Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an online connection that is not confidential.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment choices.  Just make sure that you use tax planning software from a dependable source, so you can ensure the information you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.