Is e-filing really a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they are mostly on the exact same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed. E-filing is a favorite as it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
In return, you could get any refund you are owed quicker, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
However, what about safety? And can electronic filing actually give you access to all the forms you might need if you’ve got a intricate tax situation? Are there situations when you can not e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing choice for your requirements.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within one day of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight months to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to get your money in 3 weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to cover at your convenience when you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later 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 your checking account or savings account, filing 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 means there is an electronic backup of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, you will have a digital backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those benefits — and the practice of doing this is simple.
- Utilize IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you may be able to use the IRS Free File program. The forms do the math for you and provide basic guidance. You can simply do your federal return with all these kinds.
- Use an online tax preparation service or tax software: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives. These options are an easy way to complete and e-file your own forms. Some software suppliers charge for their programs, Some are liberated. The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to steer you through the completion of your forms.
- Get complimentary, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. However, eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on income, and some providers appeal to specific demographic groups. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but be aware this alternative is likely to be the most costly one.
Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it expected over four 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 security — especially with so many data breaches. But experts agree that this isn’t a problem which should dissuade you from e-filing.
“In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your information in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies 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 of this can be routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It’s very important to employ a trusted service that will help you record your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or use an internet connection that isn’t private.
For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield because it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment choices. Just be certain that you use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you may ensure the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.