Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they’re mostly on the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.
Nearly all individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed. E-filing is a favorite as it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
In return, you can get any refund you’re owed quicker, especially if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.
But what about safety? And can electronic filing really provide you access to all the forms you might need if 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 if it might be the very best filing option for your requirements.
If you’re Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms are obtained: 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 .
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to receive a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of errors: According to the IRS, there is approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed yields, 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 yields.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to cover at your advantage when you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if needed, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. And you can 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 using the IRS Direct pay service from the checking account or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically means there’s an electronic copy of your tax documents. If something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have a digital backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those benefits — and the process of doing this is simple.
The types do the math for you and provide basic guidance. You can only do your federal return with these forms.
Using online tax preparation software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected more than four tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you may be worried about security — particularly with all these data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t a problem that should deter you from e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has proven to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” states Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, advertising and revenue at LegalShield. “In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your data in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your data safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It’s very important to use a trusted service that will assist you file your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or utilize an internet connection that is not confidential.
For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return since it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices. Just be certain that you use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so that you can make certain the information you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.