Is e-filing really a better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re largely on precisely 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. E-filing is a favorite as 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 to your bank account.
But what about safety? And can electronic filing really provide you access to all the forms that you might need if you’ve got a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file? Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it might be the very best filing option for your requirements.
If you are thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight months 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 accelerate the refund procedure.
Reduced chance of errors: According to the IRS, there’s around a 1% 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 yields compared with paper yields.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to pay at your advantage if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if necessary, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, 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 taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is an electronic backup of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have a digital backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those advantages — and the process of doing so is easy.
You have four choices for submitting an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
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 safety — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree that this isn’t an issue that should dissuade you from e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has proven to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, advertising and revenue at LegalShield. “In actuality, it may 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 email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your information secure. “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It is important to employ a trusted service to help you file your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an internet connection which is not private.
For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield since it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices. Just make certain to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you can ensure the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.