Is e-filing a much better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re mostly on precisely 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. E-filing is a favorite because it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
And in return, you could find any refund you are owed faster, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank account.
However, what about security? And can digital filing actually give you access to all the forms that you might need if you have a intricate 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 very best filing choice for your requirements.
If you are Considering e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within one day of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
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 less. Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.
Reduced chance of errors: According to the IRS, there is approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper yields.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your advantage if you e-file. It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. And you’re able to schedule electronic money transfers to easily 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 choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate 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.
Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is an electronic copy of your tax documents. If something happens to your paperwork, then you will have a digital backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those benefits — and the practice of doing this is easy.
- Utilize IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you could have the ability to use the IRS Free File program. The forms do the math for you and offer basic guidance. You can only do your federal return with these forms.
- Utilize an online tax preparation service or tax software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options. These choices are a simple way to complete and e-file your own forms. Some software providers charge for their programs, Some are liberated. The software asks you simple questions about your own life and finances to guide you through the completion of your forms.
- Get complimentary, in-person tax aid: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. But eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on income, and a few services cater to specific demographic groups. For instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers that are 60 and older.
- Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a database of licensed providers, but be aware this option 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 expected more than four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is suitable, you could be worried about security — particularly with all these data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t an issue which should deter you from e-filing.
“In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your information in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your information secure. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links “
It’s very important to use a trustworthy service to assist you record your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a public computer or use an online connection which is not confidential.
For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield 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 be certain that you use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so that you may ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.