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

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

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

Nearly all individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed.  E-filing is popular because it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

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

But what about security?  And can digital filing really provide you access to all the forms you may need in case you’ve got a intricate tax situation?  Are there situations when you can’t e-file?  Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it may be the very best filing choice for your needs.

If you’re thinking about 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 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 months to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you’ll receive your money in three weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund procedure.

  2. Reduced likelihood of errors: According to the IRS, there is approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.

  3. Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to cover at your convenience if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if needed, 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 your checking account or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. 

  4. Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital backup of your tax documents.  So if something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have a digital backup.

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

The way to e-file a tax return?

  • Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your taxes without assistance, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and provide standard advice.  You can simply do your federal return with all these kinds. 
  • Utilize an internet tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives.  These choices are a simple way to finish and e-file your own forms.  Some software providers charge for their programs, Some are free.   The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to steer you through the completion of your forms.  
  • Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  But eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on earnings, and some providers appeal to specific demographic groups.  For example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers who are 60 and older.  The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but be aware this alternative is very likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Employing online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of taxpayers.  Actually, the IRS says it expected 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 may worry about safety — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree this is not an issue which should dissuade you from e-filing.

    “E-filing a tax return has turned out to be an extremely secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, advertising and revenue at LegalShield. “In fact, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your information in the email.”

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

    It’s very important to use a trustworthy service to assist you file your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or use an internet connection which is not private.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return since 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 preparation software from a trusted source, so you may ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.