Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re largely on the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of 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.
In return, you can find any refund you’re owed faster, particularly if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
However, what about safety? And can electronic filing actually give you access to all of the forms you may need in case you’ve got a intricate tax situation? Are there situations when you can’t e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it might be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given 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 procedure.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: According to the IRS, there is approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to pay at your advantage when you e-file. It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. You also have the option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from your checking or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order. Just be aware delaying payment after the filing due date (typically April 15) can result in penalties and interest.
Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there is an electronic copy of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you will have a digital backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those advantages — and the practice of doing so is easy.
The way to e-file a tax return?
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you may have the ability to use the IRS Free File program.
- Free File Fillable Types — If your income is more than $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your taxes without help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and provide standard guidance. You can only do your federal return with all these kinds.
- Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives. These choices are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms. Some software suppliers 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 types.
- Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and a few services appeal to particular demographic groups. The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one.
Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it anticipated over four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is suitable, you could be worried about security — particularly with all these data breaches. But experts agree this is not an issue that should deter you from e-filing.
“In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing since 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 that the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your data safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted connections.”
It’s very important to use a trusted service that will help you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an online connection which is not confidential.
For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return since 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 sure that you use tax planning software from a trusted source, so that you may ensure the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.