Is e-filing a much better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they’re mostly on the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.
Nearly all individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed. E-filing is popular because it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.
If 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 can get any refund you’re owed faster, especially in the event that you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
But what about security? And can digital filing actually give you access to all of the forms that you may need if you’ve got a complex tax situation? Are there situations when you can not e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and if it may be the very best filing option for your needs.
If you are Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will confirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund. With e-filing, you’ll receive your money in 3 weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of mistakes: According to the IRS, there’s around a 1 percent 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 returns compared with paper yields.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is easier to pay at your convenience if you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. You also have the option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from the checking or savings accounts, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. Just be aware delaying payment after the filing due date (typically April 15) can lead to penalties and interest.
Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically means there is an electronic backup of your tax documents. If something happens to your paperwork, you’ll 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 simple.
How to e-file a tax return?
You have four choices for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
Using online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is suitable, you could worry about safety — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree that 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,” states Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, marketing and revenue at LegalShield. “In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your data 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 data safe. “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that need token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It’s very important to employ a trusted service to help you file your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or utilize an online connection that is not confidential.
For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield because it’s the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices. Just be sure that you use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so that you may ensure the information which you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.