Is e-filing really a much better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree on 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 submitted to the IRS are e-filed. E-filing is popular because it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
If you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS money because its workers do not need to spend time manually processing your return. In return, you could get any refund you are owed quicker, particularly if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
However, what about security? And can digital filing actually give you access to all of the forms you might need if you’ve got a intricate tax situation? Are there situations when you can’t e-file? Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and whether it might be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are 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 may take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll receive your money in three weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund process.
Reduced chance of errors: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1 percent 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 yields.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to pay at your advantage if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if needed, as long as you pay from 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. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there is an electronic backup of your tax records. If something happens to your paperwork, then 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 so is easy.
Employing online tax preparation software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is suitable, you could be worried about safety — particularly with so many data breaches. But experts agree this is not an issue that should dissuade you from e-filing.
“In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your data in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your data safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says. “All this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It’s important to employ a trustworthy service to help you record your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a public computer or utilize an internet connection that is not confidential.
For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a return because it’s the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options. Just be sure to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so you can make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.