Warren Buffett If You Buy Things – What to Consider When Filing My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they’re mostly on precisely 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. 

In return, you can get any refund you’re owed faster, particularly if you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.

But what about security?  And can digital filing really give you access to all of the forms that you might need if you have a complex tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file?  Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing option for your requirements.

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

  1. Quick confirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived . 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund procedure.

  3. Reduced chance of mistakes: According to the IRS, there is approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of mistakes on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper yields.

  4. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to cover at your advantage when you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account 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 following the filing due date (typically April 15) can lead to interest and penalties.

  5. Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically implies there is an electronic copy of your tax documents.  So if something happens to your paperwork, you’ll have an electronic backup.

The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those benefits — and the practice of doing so is easy.

    1. Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you could be able to use the IRS Free File program.  The types do the math for you and offer basic advice.  You can simply do your federal return with these forms. 
    2. Utilize an internet tax preparation service or tax applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are options.  These options are an easy way to finish and e-file your own forms.  Some applications providers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The program asks you simple questions about your life and finances to guide you through the completion of your types.  
    3. Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and some providers appeal to specific demographic groups.  For example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers that are 60 and older. 
    4. Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file yields for you if they are licensed IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a record of licensed 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 more than four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep software.

Is e-filing really secure?

While e-filing is convenient, you may worry about security — particularly with all these data breaches.  But experts agree this is not a problem that should deter 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 direction, advertising and sales at LegalShield. “In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your data in the email.”

Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data secure.  “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says.  “All this is routed over TLS encrypted connections.”

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

Bottom line

For most 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 effortless payment options.  Just make certain to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you can make certain the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.