Is e-filing really a much better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re mostly on precisely the same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed.
In return, you could get any refund you are owed quicker, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank account.
However, what about safety? And can digital filing actually give you access to all the forms that you may need if you have a intricate tax situation? Are there situations when you can’t e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it may be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you are thinking about e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms are received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been 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 weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll get your money in three weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there is approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on problems discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper yields.
Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your convenience when you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. And you can schedule electronic money transfers to easily send the IRS what you owe on a date of your choosing — again, provided that the IRS receives your payment by Tax Day. You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate 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 taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital backup of your tax records. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have a digital backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those advantages — and the process of doing so is easy.
The way to e-file a tax return?
You have four options for submitting an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
- 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.
- Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your taxes without any help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The forms do the math for you and offer standard guidance. You can only do your federal return with all these kinds.
- Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives. These choices are a simple way to finish and e-file your own forms. Some applications providers charge for their programs, Some are free. The software asks you simple questions about your own life and financing to guide you through the completion of your forms.
- Get free, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and a few services cater to specific demographic groups. By way of instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers who are 60 and older. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but be aware this alternative is very likely to be the most costly one.
Employing online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is convenient, you could be worried about security — particularly with so many 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 revenue at LegalShield. “In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your information safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It is important to use a trustworthy service to help you file your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a public computer or utilize an online connection which is not confidential.
For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield since it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options. Just be sure to use tax preparation software from a trusted source, so you may make certain the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.