Zig Ziglar Best Sellers – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes? 

Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they are largely on precisely the 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.  E-filing is popular because it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

And in return, you could 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 really provide you access to all 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 advantages of e-filing, and whether it might be the best filing option for your needs.

If you’re thinking about e-filing, some of the advantages include:

  1. Quick confirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within 24 hours of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived safely. 
  2. 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 are going to get your money in 3 weeks or not.  Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund process.

  3. Reduced likelihood of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there’s 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 returns compared with paper yields.

  4. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to pay at your convenience when you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay later if needed, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  And you can schedule electronic money transfers to 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 the checking or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of tax information: Submitting returns electronically means there is a digital copy of your tax documents.  So if something happens to your paperwork, you will have a digital backup.

The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and find those benefits — and the process of doing this is simple.

The way to e-file a tax return?

You have four options for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.

The forms do the math for you and offer basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with these forms. 

  • Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are an easy way to finish and e-file your own forms.  Some applications providers charge for their apps, Some are free.   The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to guide you through the completion of your types.  
  • Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  But eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on earnings, and a few services cater to specific demographic groups. 
  • Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file yields for you if they are licensed IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a database of licensed providers, but 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 most taxpayers.  Actually, 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 convenient, you may worry about safety — especially with so many data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t an issue which should deter you by e-filing.

    “In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted system as opposed to exposing your information in the mail.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains that the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your data safe.  “Trainers normally use IRS particular APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says.  “All this is routed over TLS encrypted connections.”

    It is very important to employ a trustworthy service to help you record your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or utilize an online connection that is not confidential.

    Bottom line

    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 easy payment choices.  Just be sure that you use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so you may make certain the information you supply to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.