- Days left
If you're not filing your federal income tax returns electronically, you are in the minority. The Internal Revenue Service has seen a big jump in the number of taxpayers using e-file over the last 10 years. In 2008, almost 58% of the 155 million tax returns filed were filed electronically, and it's time for you to get on the bandwagon.

There are plenty of benefits to electronic filing, and probably the most popular is the speed with which you can receive your tax refund. If you opt for direct deposit of your refund, you can usually expect your money in one to two weeks.

If you prefer a paper check, plan on a couple of extra weeks. In contrast, those who file paper returns never know when they'll receive their refunds. It could be several weeks or a couple of months, depending on how busy the IRS is.

The other big benefit to e-filing is accuracy. If you send in a paper tax return, someone at the IRS has to key your data into their computer system to check it against other records they have on file for you, such as W-2s and 1099s. If you file electronically, that manual process is eliminated, and you are virtually assured that the information on your taxes will end up in the IRS computers exactly as you sent it.

The IRS makes it easy for everyone to e-file. Almost every tax preparer around the country (except for a few old school types) offers e-file. And if you make $54,000 or less, you're able to e-file for free with programs in which the IRS participates

Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, MBA, CFE performs fraud examinations and financial investigations for her company Sequence Inc. Forensic Accounting, and is the author of Essentials of Corporate Fraud.

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

How to Avoid Financial Scams

Avoid getting duped by financial scams.

View Course »

Advice for Recent College Grads

Prepare yourself for the "real world".

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Video: Who Qualifies for an Affordable Care Act Exemption (Obamacare)?

The Affordable Care Act requires all Americans to have health insurance or pay a tax penalty. But, who qualifies for an Affordable Care Act exemption? Find out more about who qualifies for an exemption from the Affordable Care Act tax penalty, how to claim an exemption on your tax return and how the Affordable Care Act may affect your taxes with this video from TurboTax.

Video: How to Claim the Affordable Care Act Premium Tax Credit (Obamacare)

The Affordable Care Act Premium Tax Credit is a new refundable tax credit that can lower your monthly health insurance premiums. If you qualify for the tax credit, you can claim the Premium Tax Credit throughout the year to lower your monthly health insurance premiums, or claim the credit with your tax return to either lower your overall tax bill or increase your tax refund.

Deducting Summer Camps and Daycare with the Child and Dependent Care Credit

If you paid a daycare center, babysitter, summer camp, or other care provider to care for a qualifying child under age 13 or a disabled dependent of any age, you may qualify for a tax credit of up to up to 35 percent of qualifying expenses of $3,000 for one child or dependent, or up to $6,000 for two or more children or dependents.

What Is Schedule H: Household Employment Taxes

If you hire people to do work around your house on a regular basis, they might be considered household employees. Being an employer comes with some responsibilities for paying and reporting employment taxes, which includes filing a Schedule H with your federal tax return. But even if you have household employees, filing Schedule H is required only if the total wages you pay them is more than certain threshold amounts specified by federal tax law.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum