Is e-filing really a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they are largely 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. E-filing is a favorite because it is a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
When you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS cash because its employees don’t have to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you could find any refund you’re owed faster, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited to your bank accounts.
But what about safety? And can digital filing really give you access to all of the forms that 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 may be the best filing option for your requirements.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick confirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within one day of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in three weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit may also accelerate the refund process.
Reduced likelihood of errors: According to 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 issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.
Easy payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to cover 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 making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking account or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically implies there is a digital backup of your tax documents. If something happens to your paperwork, then you will have a digital backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those benefits — and the practice of doing this is easy.
- Utilize IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you may have the ability 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 assistance, you can use Free File Fillable Forms from the IRS. The forms do the math for you and provide standard guidance. You can only do your federal return with these forms.
- Utilize an internet tax preparation service or tax software: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives. These choices are a simple way to complete and e-file your forms. Some applications providers charge for their programs, Some are free. The program asks you simple questions about your life and finances to guide you through the completion of your types.
- Get free, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields. But eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on income, and a few services cater to specific demographic groups. 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 preparation software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected over four tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is suitable, you may worry about security — particularly with so many data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t a problem that should deter you by 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 leadership, advertising 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 rather than exposing your data in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, clarifies the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your information safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links “
It’s important to use a trustworthy service to assist 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 is sensible to e-file a return since it’s the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment options. Just make sure to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you may make certain the information you supply to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept secure.