Is e-filing really a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they are largely on the exact 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 is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
And in return, you can find any refund you’re owed quicker, particularly if you have it directly deposited into your bank account.
However, what about security? And can digital filing actually give you access to all of the forms you may need in case you have a intricate tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can not e-file? Let’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it might be the very best filing choice for your needs.
If you are Considering 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 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 3 weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund procedure.
Reduced chance of errors: According to the IRS, there is around a 1% error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Easy payment process: 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 necessary, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. And you can schedule electronic funds 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 choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings account, 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) will lead to penalties and interest.
Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is an electronic backup of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, you will have a digital backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those advantages — and the practice of doing this is simple.
How to e-file a tax return?
You have four options for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
Using online tax preparation software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it anticipated over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is suitable, you may be worried about security — particularly with all these data breaches. But experts agree this is not a problem that should dissuade you by 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 sales at LegalShield. “In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your information safe. “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that require ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It is very important to use a trustworthy service that will assist you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or utilize an internet connection that is not private.
For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield since 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 make sure to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you can ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.