Tony Robbins Senior Leader – Is It Best To E-File My Taxes?

Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes? 

Americans and the IRS might not agree on everything, but they’re largely on the 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.  E-filing is a favorite because it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

In return, you could get any refund you are owed quicker, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank account.

However, what about security?  And can electronic filing actually give you access to all the forms you may need if you have a intricate tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can not e-file?  Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it may be the best filing choice for your needs.

If you are Considering e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:

  1. Quick affirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within one day of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight months to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund process.

  3. Reduced chance of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there’s approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of mistakes on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.

  4. Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to pay at your convenience when you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, as long as 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. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using 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. 

  5. Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically implies there’s a digital copy of your tax documents.  If something happens to your paperwork, you will have an electronic backup.

The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those advantages — and the practice of doing so is simple.

You have four options for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.

  • Free File Fillable Forms — If your income is over $72,000 and you’re comfortable doing your earnings without assistance, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and provide basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with all these forms. 
  • Use an internet tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options.  These options are a simple way to finish and e-file your forms.  Some applications providers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your own life and finances to guide you through the completion of your forms.  
  • Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  However, eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on income, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups.  For example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers who are 60 and older.  The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one. 
  • Using online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  In fact, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really stable?

    While e-filing is suitable, you may worry about safety — particularly with so many data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t an issue which should dissuade you from e-filing.

    “In actuality, 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 data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your information secure.  “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says.  “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links .”

    It is very important to employ a trusted service that will assist you file your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or use an online connection that isn’t confidential.

    Bottom line

    For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment choices.  Just be sure that you use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so that you may ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.