Stephen Covey 7 Habits – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re largely on the exact same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.

The majority of individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed. 

And in return, you could get any refund you are owed faster, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank account.

However, what about safety?  And can electronic filing really give you access to all the forms that you might need in case you have a intricate tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can not e-file?  Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it may be the very best filing choice for your requirements.

If you are thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:

  1. Quick confirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived . 

    Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.

  2. Reduced likelihood of mistakes: 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 info on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.

  3. Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier 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.  You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from the checking or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order.  Just be aware delaying payment after the filing due date (typically April 15) will result in interest and penalties.

  4. Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically implies there is a digital copy of your tax documents.  If something happens to your paperwork, then you will have an electronic backup.

The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those advantages — and the process of doing so is simple.

You have four choices for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.

  • Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you’re comfortable doing your earnings without any help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The forms do the math for you and offer basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with these forms. 
  • Utilize an online tax preparation service or tax software: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives.  These choices are an easy way to complete and e-file your own forms.  Some applications suppliers charge for their programs, Some are free.   The software asks you simple questions about your own life and financing to guide you through the completion of your forms.  
  • Get complimentary, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  But eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on income, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file yields for you if they are authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of authorized 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 preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  Actually, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really stable?

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

    “E-filing a tax return has turned out to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, advertising and sales at LegalShield. “In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your data in the mail.”

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

    It is important to use a trustworthy service to help you record your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an online connection that is not private.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield because 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 you can ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.