When you file your tax return, you should feel confident that your information is safe and that you are getting your maximum refund. Paper filing simply can’t compare to the ease and security of filing online – and most Americans agree. In fact, the IRS estimates that more than 1 billion Form 1040 series tax returns have been e-filed since 1990. Still, some people hesitate to do their taxes online. Here are some of the myths surrounding online tax filing – and what is actually true.
Myth 1: I need to know a lot about taxes
Fact: There is a lot of information out there about taxes, but you certainly don’t have to know everything. Some basic tax terms and a good checklist will go a long way to get you prepared to file. TaxSlayer makes filing even simpler, because all the forms, deductions, and tax law changes are already updated in the software when you go to fill out your return.
Myth 2: I’ll be more likely to be audited
Fact: The IRS processes returns that are submitted through e-filing software faster and with fewer errors than hard copy returns. This means the chances you’ll be audited due to a mistake is actually lower. More importantly still, you’ll get your refund faster when you e-file.
Myth 3: It’s complicated
Fact: If you had to keep your documents safe, track your own deductions, keep up with tax law changes, do your own math, and verify that your dollar amounts were all correct, filing would be complicated. But when you complete your return online, most of this work is done for you. TaxSlayer offers a fully-guided experience. Begin by simply importing your W-2 and uploading your necessary documents right into your online account. When it comes to finding all of your deductions, the program asks you straightforward questions about your income, employment, family status, and more, so you’ll get the tax breaks for which you are eligible. When you return to file with TaxSlayer, you’ll find your previous tax information saved in your account history year after year.
Myth 4: It’s expensive to file online
Fact: You can always begin filing your tax return for free. You don’t actually pay anything until you submit your return. TaxSlayer’s products vary in price depending on the type of help we offer throughout the filing process. The price of the actual tax forms you complete is consistent for all the packages. You can add options like talking with a tax professional, live chat, audit assistance, and comparing your current and prior-year returns for an additional cost only if you choose. Compare our products now and see which service package would best meet your needs.
Myth 5: It’s less secure than filing on paper
Fact: E-filing is a faster process than traditional filing. Once you hit submit, your return goes right to the IRS for processing. Mailing a return means your confidential and personal information sits in a post office box and passes through many hands with no guarantee that it has ever arrived. For their part, the IRS actually prefers e-filing over paper filing. Electronic records are easier and less time-consuming to process on their end.
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This article is up to date and accounts for tax law changes for tax year 2018 (tax returns filed in 2019). Learn more about tax reform enacted under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act here.