Is e-filing really a better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they’re largely on precisely the exact same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed.
And in return, you can find any refund you’re owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
But what about security? And can electronic filing actually give you access to all of the forms you might need in case you have a complex tax situation? Are there situations when you can not e-file? Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it may be the best filing option for your requirements.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you submit 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 less. Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund process.
Reduced chance of errors: According to the IRS, there is approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, 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.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your convenience when you e-file. It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if necessary, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. And you’re able to 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 Direct 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 taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there’s a digital backup of your tax records. If something happens to your paperwork, you will have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those benefits — and the process of doing so is easy.
The way to e-file a tax return?
You have four options for submitting an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
The forms do the math for you and provide standard guidance. You can only do your federal return with these kinds.
Using online tax preparation software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it anticipated over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you could worry about safety — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree that this is not an issue that should dissuade you from e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has proven to be an extremely secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, marketing 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 mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your data secure. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that require ab sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It is important to employ a trustworthy service to help you record your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or utilize an internet connection that isn’t private.
For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield because it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options. Just be certain to use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so that you may make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.