Zig Ziglar Morning Motivation – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they’re largely on precisely the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.

The majority of individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed.  E-filing is popular as it’s a win-win for taxpayers and the IRS.

And in return, you could get any refund you are owed faster, particularly if you have it directly deposited into your bank account.

But what about security?  And can electronic filing really provide you access to all of the forms that you might need if you’ve got a intricate tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file?  Let’s look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it may be the best filing choice for your requirements.

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

  1. Quick affirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of digital submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived . 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to receive a tax refund.  With e-filing, you are going to get your money in 3 weeks or less.  Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.

  3. Reduced likelihood of mistakes: 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 information on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.

  4. Simple payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to pay at your convenience when you e-file.  You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline.  And you can schedule electronic funds 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 option to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Immediate pay service from your checking or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. 

  5. Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there is a digital copy of your tax records.  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 advantages — and the practice of doing so is simple.

  • Free File Fillable Forms — If your income is more than $72,000 and you are comfortable doing your earnings 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 only do your federal return with all these forms. 
  • Use an online tax preparation tax or service software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are options.  These choices are a simple way to complete and e-file your forms.  Some software 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 forms.  
  • Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields.  But eligibility for free aid is typically limited based on earnings, and a few providers cater to specific demographic groups.  By way of example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers that are 60 and older.  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 anticipated more than four tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.

    Is e-filing really secure?

    While e-filing is convenient, you could worry about security — particularly with so many data breaches.  But experts agree that this isn’t an issue which should deter you from 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 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 email.”

    Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, clarifies that the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your data secure.  “Vendors typically utilize IRS particular APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says.  “All of this is routed over TLS encrypted connections”

    It’s important to employ a trusted service that will assist you file your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an online connection that isn’t confidential.

    Bottom line

    For most taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield since 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 make sure to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so you can ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept protected.