Is e-filing really a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re mostly 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.
When you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS cash because its employees do not have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you can find any refund you’re owed quicker, especially if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.
But what about safety? And can digital filing actually give you access to all the forms that you might need in case you have a intricate tax situation? Are there situations when you can not e-file? Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you are Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll get your money in 3 weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: According to the IRS, there is around 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 problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to cover at your convenience if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is an electronic copy of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, you will have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those benefits — and the practice of doing this is simple.
How to e-file a tax return?
Using online tax preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is convenient, you may be worried about safety — particularly with all these data breaches. But experts agree that this isn’t a problem which 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, advertising and sales 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 mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your information safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links “
It’s very important to use a trustworthy service to help you record your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or use an online connection which isn’t confidential.
For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options. Just be sure to use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so you may make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.