Is e-filing a better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they’re mostly on precisely the exact same page when it comes 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 is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
In return, you could get any refund you’re owed quicker, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
But what about safety? And can digital filing actually provide you access to all of the forms you may need if you have a intricate tax situation? Are there 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 are thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in three weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.
Reduced chance of errors: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of mistakes on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your advantage when you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. And you can schedule electronic money transfers to send the IRS what you owe on a date of your choosing — again, as long as the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. You also have the option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically means there is a digital backup of your tax records. So if something happens to your paperwork, you’ll have an electronic backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those advantages — and the process of doing this is easy.
The forms do the math for you and provide standard advice. You can simply do your federal return with all these kinds.
Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it anticipated more than four tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is convenient, you may be worried about safety — particularly with so many data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t an issue that should dissuade you by e-filing.
“In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your data safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this is routed over TLS encrypted connections.”
It is important to employ a trusted service that will assist you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an internet connection that isn’t confidential.
For most 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 to use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so you can ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.