Stephen Covey Self Awareness – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they are mostly on the exact same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.

The majority of 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.

And in return, you could get any refund you’re owed faster, particularly if you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

However, what about safety?  And can digital filing actually give you access to all of the forms you may need in case you have a complex 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’re Considering e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:

  1. Quick affirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived . 
  2. Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll get your money in three weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund process.

  3. Reduced chance of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there’s approximately a 1 percent 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 yields compared with paper returns.

  4. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to cover 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.  Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, 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, you will have an electronic backup.

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

The way to e-file a tax return?

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

  • Free File Fillable Types — If your income is more than $72,000 and you are 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 offer standard guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with these forms. 
  • Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are options.  These choices are an easy way to complete and e-file your forms.  Some software suppliers charge for their programs, Some are liberated.   The software asks you simple questions about your life and financing to guide you through the completion of your types.  
  • Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  But eligibility for free help is typically limited based on income, and a few services cater to particular demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but you should be aware this alternative is likely to be the most costly one. 

    Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it anticipated over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is convenient, you could worry about safety — particularly with so many data breaches.  But experts agree that this is not a problem 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 direction, marketing and sales at LegalShield. “In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network rather than exposing your data in the mail.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data secure.  “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says.  “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”

    It is important to employ a trustworthy service that will help you file your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or utilize an internet connection which isn’t confidential.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it makes sense 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 be certain to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so that you may ensure the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.