Is e-filing a much better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re mostly on precisely the exact same page when it comes to e-filing individual income tax returns.
Nearly all individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed.
When you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS cash because its workers do not have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you could get any refund you are owed faster, 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 of the forms you might need in case you have a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can not e-file? Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you’re Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit can also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced chance of mistakes: In accordance with the IRS, there’s approximately a 1% error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more info on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Simple payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to cover at your convenience when you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay later if necessary, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the option to pay your balance by using the IRS Direct pay service from the checking 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 is a digital copy of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you’ll have an electronic backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and get those benefits — and the process of doing this 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 be able to use the IRS Free File program. The forms do the math for you and offer standard guidance. You can only do your federal return with these forms.
- Utilize an internet tax preparation tax or service software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options. These options are an easy way to complete and e-file your forms. Some software suppliers charge for their apps, Some are liberated. The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to steer you through the completion of your forms.
- Get free, in-person tax aid: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. However, eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on income, and a few providers cater to specific demographic groups.
- Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re licensed IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but you should be aware this alternative is very likely to be the most costly one.
Using online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected over four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is convenient, you could be worried about security — particularly with so many 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 an extremely secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, marketing and sales at LegalShield. “In actuality, it may be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data secure. “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that require ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It is very important to employ a trusted service to assist you file your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an online connection that is not confidential.
For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment options. Just make certain that you use tax planning software from a dependable source, so you may make certain the information you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.