Is e-filing a much better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they are mostly on 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. E-filing is a favorite as it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
And in return, you could find any refund you’re owed faster, particularly in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.
However, what about security? And can digital filing really give you access to all of the forms you may need in case you’ve got a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file? Let’s look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it might be the very best filing choice for your needs.
If you are Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it may take six to eight months to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll get your money in 3 weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund process.
Reduced chance of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there’s approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper yields.
Easy payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your advantage if you e-file. It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if necessary, as long as you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from your checking or savings account, submitting 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 implies there’s an electronic backup of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you will have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those advantages — and the practice of doing so is simple.
How to e-file a tax return?
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you could have the ability to use the IRS Free File program.
- Free File Fillable Types — If your income is over $72,000 and you’re comfortable doing your taxes without help, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The types do the math for you and offer standard advice. You can simply do your federal return with all these forms.
- Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options. These choices are a simple way to finish and e-file your own forms. Some software providers charge for their programs, Some are liberated. The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to steer you through the completion of your types.
- Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. But eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on earnings, and some services cater to particular demographic groups. By way of instance, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on assisting filers that are 60 and older.
- Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, including CPAs, can e-file yields for you if they are authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but you should be aware this alternative is likely to be the most costly one.
Employing online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you may be worried about security — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree that this isn’t a problem that should dissuade you by 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 data security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your information secure. “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this is routed over TLS encrypted links “
It is important to use a trustworthy service that will assist you record your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or utilize an online connection which is not private.
For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield since it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment choices. Just be sure to use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so you may make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.