You may be down to the wire right now and pondering whether to file electronically or mail the return off.
One of the most obvious perks of filing electronically is avoiding any lines at the post office while trying to get your return postmarked on time. But did you know that electronic filing has a digital postmark as well? That’s right. So even if you’re rejected and have to file again, you have proof you can print showing you filed on time. When you file by paper, the only proof you have of the postmark is on the envelope that you sent off.
Another perk of electronic filing is you know the IRS got it. When your return is accepted, you get a Declaration Control Number (DCN). This is your receipt showing they got it and it was accepted.
One note on this, you shouldn’t wait until you’re down to the wire for filing. (I know, I know, we’re a nation of procrastinators.) You want to leave yourself some breathing room for technical problems. Just recently I had my internet access go down for an entire hour. This coincided exactly with a meeting I had that was conducted online. I was merely annoyed. Now imagine that happening from eleven to midnight on April 15th while you’re trying to file your return. And some returns aren’t eligible for electronic filing at all. So you want to try to file with plenty of time to mail the return in case you need to.
If you have any questions on electronic filing, check the electronic filing forum to see if your question has already been answered. If it hasn’t, go ahead and ask it there.
If you have any other questions about your return, check out our Live Community to find the area your question is about.