Zig Ziglar Self Talk Card – Should I E-file My Taxes Online

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

Americans and the IRS might not agree about everything, but they are largely on precisely the exact same page in regards 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.

When you e-file your federal income tax return, you conserve the IRS money because its workers do not need to spend time manually processing your return. 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 actually provide you access to all the forms that you might need if you’ve got a complex tax situation?  Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file?  Let us look at the benefits of e-filing, and whether it may be the very best filing choice for your needs.

If you’re Considering e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:

  1. Quick affirmation your forms have been received: The IRS will confirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of electronic submission.  For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely. 
  2. Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight months 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 speed up the refund procedure.

  3. Reduced likelihood of errors: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed yields, compared with a 20% rate of mistakes on paper filings.  The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper returns.

  4. Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your convenience if you e-file.  It’s possible to submit returns early and pay afterwards if necessary, provided that you pay by the April 15 filing deadline.  Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by using 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.  Just be aware delaying payment after the filing due date (typically April 15) will lead to penalties and interest.

  5. Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s a digital copy of your tax records.  So if something happens to your paperwork, you will have an electronic backup.

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

The way to e-file a tax return?

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

    1. Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or not as you may be able to use the IRS Free File program.  The types do the math for you and provide basic guidance.  You can simply do your federal return with all these kinds. 
    2. Use an online tax preparation service or tax software: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives.  These options are an easy way to complete and e-file your forms.  Some software suppliers charge for their apps, Some are liberated.   The software asks you simple questions about your life and finances to guide you through the completion of your types.  
    3. Get free, in-person tax aid: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns.  But eligibility for free help is typically limited based on earnings, and some services appeal to particular 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 record of licensed providers, but be aware this option is likely to be the most costly one. 

Employing online tax prep software is far and away the preferred approach of the majority of taxpayers.  Actually, the IRS says it anticipated over four in five tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.

Is e-filing really stable?

While e-filing is convenient, you may worry about security — especially with all these data breaches.  But experts agree this isn’t an issue that should dissuade you by e-filing.

“In fact, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted system rather than exposing your data in the mail.”

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

It’s very important to employ a trusted service that will assist you file your taxes.  Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or utilize an online connection that is not private.

Bottom line

For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it is 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 planning software from a trusted source, so you can ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS is going to be kept protected.