Skip to main content
Please enter a legal issue and/or a location
Begin typing to search, use arrow keys to navigate, use enter to select

Should I e-File My IRS Return?

You may be able to file a paperless return using IRS e-file (electronic filing). Over 68 million taxpayers preferred e-file over filing a paper tax return last year.

IRS e-file uses automation to replace most of the manual steps needed to process paper returns. As a result, the processing of e-file returns is faster and more accurate than the processing of paper returns. However, as with a paper return, you are responsible for making sure your return contains accurate information and is filed on time.

Benefits of IRS e-file

  • Free File allows qualified taxpayers to prepare and e-file their own tax returns for free using commercially available online tax preparation software.
  • Get your refund in half the time as paper filers do, even faster and safer with direct deposit.
  • Sign electronically and file a completely paperless return.
  • Receive an electronic proof of receipt within 48 hours that the IRS received your return.
  • If you owe, you can e-file and authorize an electronic funds withdrawal or pay by credit card. If you e-file before April 17, 2006, you can schedule an electronic funds withdrawal from your checking or savings account as late as April 17, 2006.
  • Prepare and file your federal and state returns together and save time.
  • IRS computers quickly and automatically check for errors or other missing information.
  • The chance of being audited does not differ whether you e-file or file a paper tax return.
  • Your bank account information is safeguarded along with other tax return information. The IRS does not have access to credit card numbers.

Using an Authorized IRS e-File Provider

Many tax professionals electronically file tax returns for their clients. As a taxpayer, you have two options:

  1. You can prepare your return, take it to an Authorized IRS e-file Provider, and have the provider transmit it electronically to the IRS.
  2. You can have a tax professional prepare your return and transmit it for you electronically.

Note: Tax professionals may charge a fee for IRS e-file. Fees may vary depending on the professional and the specific services rendered.

Using Your Personal Computer

You can file your tax return in a fast, easy, convenient way using your personal computer. A computer with a modem or Internet access and tax preparation software are all you need. Best of all, you can e-file from the comfort of your home 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. IRS approved tax preparation software is available for online use on the Internet, for download from the Internet, and in retail stores.

For more information on e-filing, visit the IRS website at

Was this helpful?

Thank you. Your response has been sent.

You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help

Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.

Or contact an attorney near you:

Next Steps

Contact a qualified tax attorney to help you navigate your federal and/or state tax issues.

Begin typing to search, use arrow keys to navigate, use enter to select

Help Me Find a Do-It-Yourself Solution

Copied to clipboard

Find a Lawyer

More Options