Is e-filing a much better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree about 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 submitted 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 can get any refund you’re owed quicker, particularly if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.
But what about security? And can electronic filing really give you access to all of the forms that you might need if you’ve got a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can not e-file? Let’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing option for your needs.
If you are Considering e-filing, a Few 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 your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may 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 less. Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund process.
Reduced chance of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there is approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of mistakes on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your advantage if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if necessary, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. And you’re able to schedule electronic funds 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. You also have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from your checking account or savings accounts, 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’s a digital 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 decide to e-file and find those benefits — and the practice of doing so is easy.
You have four choices for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
The forms do the math for you and offer standard guidance. You can only do your federal return with all these forms.
Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it anticipated over four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is suitable, you may be worried about security — particularly with so many data breaches. But experts agree that this is not an issue that should dissuade you from e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has turned out to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product leadership, advertising and sales at LegalShield. “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 information in the mail.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has set safety measures in place to keep your information safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It’s important to employ a trusted service that will help you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or utilize an online connection which is not private.
For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield because it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices. Just be certain that you use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so that you can make certain the information you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.