Why Electronic Filing = Faster Tax Refunds

The IRS electronic filing system opens February 12th this year...

Taxpayers looking to get their tax refund as quickly as possible should take note - Starting February, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is expected to begin accepting electronically filed consumer tax returns. Taxpayers can access the electronic filing system, also known as the "e-File" system, through participating websites such as www.E-file.com.

Since the debut of electronic filing in 1990, and the implementation of a 2012 mandate by the government to boost electronic filing, tax preparers have been encouraged each year to increase the percentage of electronically filled returns they are responsible for. Over eighty percent of tax filings are now sent electronically to the IRS.

Filing electronically allows taxpayers to receive their refund much faster than printing and mailing their return. Why? Because transmission of an electronically filed return can take just minutes versus physical mail which can take days or even weeks for the IRS to receive and process it. Paper filing can sometimes result in lost or delayed returns not to mention time consuming trips to the U.S. post office in order to send the documents by certified mail (the recommended method). It also typically takes less time for a person to enter their information and complete the return in a digital format.

An additional benefit to the taxpayer is the ability to prepare and file both federal and state tax returns at the same time. Many states now prefer filers to transmit their federal and state documents simultaneously. Furthermore, today taxpayers will receive their fastest refunds when the state and IRS processes returns digitally and then direct deposit the refunds into the taxpayers’ accounts.

When a consumer files electronically there are, on average, fewer errors. The error rate for a paper return is 21 percent. However, the e-filed returns generate an error rate of just one half of one percent. If an error does occur, a taxpayer may be given the opportunity to correct it and retransmit the return with their selected electronic filing program.

Even better, you no longer need to wait until February 12th (when the IRS begins to accept returns) to start yours. The E-file.com software program allows users to get started with their tax return even before the this date, as long as you have the necessary information to file electronically. Such as a valid Social Security number, last year’s adjusted gross income or an electronic filing pin number (more) which will allow the taxpayer to digitally “sign” the return. When completed before February 12th, the prepared tax return is queued so that when the IRS opens the electronic filing system, it gets transmitted the very same day. This feature allows users to start their return as soon as possible and deliver it to the IRS once they are ready to accept it. Get started today on receiving your fastest refund by creating a free account here.



Q&A: How long does it take for your taxes to be direct deposited?

Direct deposit eliminates the time required to print and mail a tax refund. Taxpayers can receive their fastest tax refund when transmitting their return electronically and choosing direct deposit. The IRS generally processes direct deposited refunds within three weeks of accepting an electronic transmission. If you opt to send a paper return your refund may take up to eight weeks.

To help your tax refund get processed within these time frames, it is important to make sure that all information in your return is correct. E-file.com can help make sure the calculations are accurate, but it is just as important to double check all personal information, such as birth dates, social security numbers, and address. An error with this can slow down the process for receiving your refund dramatically. Taking an extra few minutes to review your paperwork before submitting can help to ensure that you get your refund as quickly as possible.