Frequently Asked Questions about eFile
Here are the answers to the most common questions asked about IRS eFile (eFiling).
Question: What is IRS eFile?
Answer: IRS e-file is a way to electronically file your taxes available to individuals. It is the fastest way to file taxes – and you receive your refund in about half of the usual time.
Question: What do I gain by using IRS eFile?
Answer: Fast electronic filing. Fast proof of acceptance. Fast refunds. Peace of mind and security. Your tax preparer or your online tax preparation service transmits your tax return from their/your computers to the IRS. Just click and within seconds your return is filed. Within 48 hours the IRS sends proof that it has been accepted. Only IRS eFile offers this advantage.
Question: How accurate is IRS efile?
Answer: IRS eFile is virtually error-proof. IRS efile is so accurate it greatly reduces the chance that you will get “one of those letters” from the IRS.
Question: What about my signature?
Answer: You simply sign the signature document, form 8453 or digitally sign your return, and we take care of the rest.
Question: Do I really get my refund faster if I efile my tax return?
Answer: With IRS e-file, you’ll get your refund back in about half the usual time. It is even faster if you have your refund directly deposited to your bank account.
Question: What If I owe a balance due? Why should I want the speed of efile?
Answer: You can file now, pay later, and beat the last-minute rush. No matter when we e-file your tax return, you don’t have to pay what you owe until later as late as April 15. In the meantime, you have a fast, electronic proof of acceptance from the IRS.
Question: Where else can I get additional information about IRS efile?
Answer: Visit the IRS website at www.irs.ustreas.gov or in your tax booklet.
Question: Is there a fee for IRS efile?
Answer: Your tax preparer will be glad to explain the fees for tax preparation and efiling. These fees are not based on any figures from your tax return. The IRS does not charge a fee for e-filing and neither do we.
Question: Can I efile my state tax return with a Federal return?
Answer: In most states, yes. Ask your tax preparer about this service.
Question: How do I pay when I choose IRS efile?
Answer: You have new choices this year. You can authorize a direct transfer from your checking or savings account as part of your tax return. With this option you can delay when the money comes out of your account until later, as late as April 15. You can also pay by phone using a credit card by dialing 1-888-2-PAY-TAX and entering a jurisdiction code of 1040. You can also still pay by check or money order.
Question: If I choose the direct transfer option and delay payment, can I be sure the money won’t be withdrawn sooner?
Answer: Money will not be withdrawn from your account before the date you specify. However, if you designate a weekend or bank holiday, the payment will not be withdrawn until the next business day because the U.S. Treasury can settle payments only on business days.
Question: What confirmation of payment will I receive?
Answer: Your confirmation will be your bank statement and your copy of your electronically filed tax return which includes your direct transfer authorization.
Question: Can I make my payment on or after April 15?
Answer:You can designate the payment to be made up to and including April 15, but not after that date. Your payment will be considered timely if your electronic tax return is transmitted and accepted on or before April 15. Note: some transactions may take a day or two longer, due to circumstances beyond the control of the IRS. Therefore, we suggest that all payments be scheduled for transaction at least two business days before April 15.
Question: What if later I want to cancel or change my designated payment date?
Answer: Once you efile your tax return and it is accepted by the IRS, you cannot change your designated payment date. If you need to change the date, your only option is to cancel the transaction and send a check for the correct amount. You may cancel a payment ONLY if the US Treasury receives cancellation instructions by the morning of the business day prior to the day that you designated as your payment date. The cancellation must be authorized by you or by a person with access to your Taxpayer identification Number (TIN), payment amount, and bank account number. Please call 1-888-353-4537 toll-free if you need to cancel a payment.
Question: Can I make partial payments?
Answer: You can make a payment for less than the balance due amount on your tax return. However, you are responsible for paying the remaining balance due by April 15 or you will be subject to late payment penalties and interest. If you cannot pay in full by April 15, you should file form 9465, Installment Agreement Request. An approved Installment Agreement allows you to make a predetermined series of partial payments after April 15 and includes interest charges since these payments are considered late.
Question: If I do not choose to pay electronically when I file my electronic tax return, can my tax preparer initiate an electronic payment for me at a later date?
Answer: No. An electronic payment is initiated only at the time an electronic tax return is filed.
Question: If I give the IRS access to my bank account number, what else can they do?
Answer: Nothing. The IRS will use your direct transfer authorization ONLY for this one payment – to deduct the amount you designated at the time that you filed your electronic tax return.