Is e-filing 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.
Nearly all individual income tax returns filed to the IRS are e-filed.
In return, you could find any refund you’re owed faster, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
But what about safety? And can electronic filing really give you access to all the forms you might need in case you have a complex tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can not e-file? Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it might be the best filing choice for your needs.
If you’re thinking about e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will affirm a tax filing was received within one day of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS doesn’t send any acknowledgment that your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit can also accelerate the refund procedure.
Reduced chance of mistakes: According to the IRS, there is around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on problems discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Easy payment process: If you owe the IRS money, it is simpler to pay at your convenience when you e-file. It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from the checking or savings account, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a commission, or paying by check or money order. Just be aware delaying payment following the filing due date (typically April 15) will result in penalties and interest.
Digital storage of taxation information: Submitting returns electronically means there is an electronic copy of your tax documents. If something happens to your paperwork, 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 easy.
You have four options for filing an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you could be able to use the IRS Free File program. The types do the math for you and provide standard advice. You can only do your federal return with these kinds.
- Use an internet tax preparation service or tax applications: 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 liberated. The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to steer you through the completion of your forms.
- Get free, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields. However, eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on earnings, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups. By way of example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers who are 60 and older.
- 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 authorized providers, but you should be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one.
Employing online tax preparation software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. In fact, the IRS says it expected more than four tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep software.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is convenient, you may worry about safety — especially with so many data breaches. But experts agree that this isn’t a problem that should deter you by e-filing.
“In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your data in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of data security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has put safety measures in place to keep your information safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that require ab sessions,” Chow says. “All of this is routed over TLS encrypted connections”
It is important to employ a trusted service that will help you file your taxes. Chow advises not to e-file on a computer or use an online connection which is not confidential.
For many taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a yield since it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and easy payment choices. Just be certain to use tax preparation software from a dependable source, so you may ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.