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Old 01-23-2017, 07:58 AM   #61
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Help? I use TT but have always filed by mail. I'd like to e-file, and this thread points me in the right direction - irs.gov and then... I see this page: https://www.irs.gov/uac/efile-with-commercial-software
but it doesn't explicitly say how to actually DO the filing.

So let's say I've used TT and I'm all set and ready to send it in, electronically. Can someone point me to the exact web page from which (I assume) I would upload my resulting TT file?

TIA.
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Old 01-23-2017, 08:04 AM   #62
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Help? I use TT but have always filed by mail. I'd like to e-file, and this thread points me in the right direction - irs.gov and then... I see this page: https://www.irs.gov/uac/efile-with-commercial-software
but it doesn't explicitly say how to actually DO the filing.

So let's say I've used TT and I'm all set and ready to send it in, electronically. Can someone point me to the exact web page from which (I assume) I would upload my resulting TT file?

TIA.
When you get to the end, TT will ask if you want to efile or print the forms for mailing and you just follow the directions. I believe the efile goes through TT, not directly to the IRS.
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Old 01-23-2017, 11:31 AM   #63
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When you get to the end, TT will ask if you want to efile or print the forms for mailing and you just follow the directions. I believe the efile goes through TT, not directly to the IRS.
That's correct for every tax prep program, whether you download software or enter your taxes at their secure website.

It's painless, really!

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Old 01-23-2017, 02:10 PM   #64
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Hasn't the IRS been hacked a few times in the past years and the information they got was always for people that e-filed? I haven't heard of paper filers having any issues (though maybe I'm wrong?).

Its the reason I use for paper filing. And I find it really easy. I have setup a spreadsheet with all the equations needed to give optimal results for different scenarios. I just fill in the 1099 data and I get my computed answer. Then I just put it down on paper and I'm done. No problems.
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Old 01-23-2017, 02:27 PM   #65
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OP here. I've been filling in my Turbo Tax (use it for free option, pending completion) and may have to paper file anyway. I made a small amount of 1099 income last year, and have a car mileage deduction for that. I don't know, yet, if I have no choice but it appears I may have to upgrade beyond Deluxe to claim that mileage deduction. That mileage deduction is worth about $70 net....and the upgrade costs $69.
I've had this 1099 income in the past and never had to upgrade beyond Deluxe. But if true it sticks in my craw that for all intents and purposes I can't use this legitimate deduction via Turbo Tax.
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Old 01-23-2017, 03:18 PM   #66
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OP here. I've been filling in my Turbo Tax (use it for free option, pending completion) and may have to paper file anyway. I made a small amount of 1099 income last year, and have a car mileage deduction for that. I don't know, yet, if I have no choice but it appears I may have to upgrade beyond Deluxe to claim that mileage deduction. That mileage deduction is worth about $70 net....and the upgrade costs $69.
I've had this 1099 income in the past and never had to upgrade beyond Deluxe. But if true it sticks in my craw that for all intents and purposes I can't use this legitimate deduction via Turbo Tax.
Deluxe still has schedule C. There should be a section in the interview for unreimbursed employment expenses; or if you have the installed version on your computer, you can go into forms mode and edit it directly.
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Old 01-23-2017, 04:17 PM   #67
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+1

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Old 01-23-2017, 04:18 PM   #68
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How do I start a new thread "Should I sell my kidney to pay for a vacation?"
My ex would have said "Yes!" Seriously.
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Old 01-23-2017, 06:04 PM   #69
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Hasn't the IRS been hacked a few times in the past years and the information they got was always for people that e-filed? I haven't heard of paper filers having any issues (though maybe I'm wrong?).

Its the reason I use for paper filing. And I find it really easy. I have setup a spreadsheet with all the equations needed to give optimal results for different scenarios. I just fill in the 1099 data and I get my computed answer. Then I just put it down on paper and I'm done. No problems.
Yes, you are wrong. The access to folks accounts weren't because they efiled. There were numerous IRS security holes unrelated to efile, and some were due to swiped W2s from phishing corporate HR of from phishing the victim directly.

The fraudsters used eFile, but it didn't matter whether the victim had eFiled or not.
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Old 01-23-2017, 06:49 PM   #70
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Yes, you are wrong. The access to folks accounts weren't because they efiled. There were numerous security holes unrelated to efile, but some were due to swiped W2s from phishing corporate HR.



The fraudsters used eFile, but it didn't matter whether the victim had eFiled or not.


I agree. A return was efiled on our tax ID even though we always mail a paper return (prepared with Taxcut) to IRS. The breech/hack occurred elsewhere and was used to file a fake return.
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Old 01-23-2017, 07:10 PM   #71
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I don't think so... they assess "failure to file" penalties.
AFAIK, the penalty for failure to file is a % of the tax due, so if you have indeed timely paid all taxes the IRS thinks you owe, the penalty will be $0. I know someone who has annually paid all tax due but has not filed since the '90s. This person gets letters from the IRS saying they want to send a refund but can't without a return being filed.
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Old 01-23-2017, 07:14 PM   #72
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Old 01-23-2017, 07:59 PM   #73
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Technically all you need do is pay the tax you owe, which means you need not file any forms at all.
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I don't think so... they assess "failure to file" penalties.
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AFAIK, the penalty for failure to file is a % of the tax due, so if you have indeed timely paid all taxes the IRS thinks you owe, the penalty will be $0. I know someone who has annually paid all tax due but has not filed since the '90s. This person gets letters from the IRS saying they want to send a refund but can't without a return being filed.
While technically you are correct that failure to file penalties would be nil if yu have no unpaid taxes, a couple questions are in order.

How would you know that you have paid the tax that you owe unless you have prepared a return or at least done all the requisite calculations?

While it is rare that the government would prosecute a willful failure to file if you don't owe, is it a risk that you are willing to take or suggest that others take? Are you willing to take the risk that you draw some administrator or prosecutor who decides to prosecute you to make a point?

Next time you see that person, please thank them for their contributions to the U.S. government.

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Failure to file is one of the criminal offenses set forth in IRC § 7203. Notably, the statute requires that the failure to file the tax return was “willful” – so mere inadvertence or carelessness is not punishable under the statute. In order to establish willful failure to file a return under section 7203, the government must show three things: (1) the taxpayer was required by law to file a return for the taxable year; (2) the taxpayer failed to file the return at the time required by law; and (3) the failure was willful. In establishing its case against the taxpayer, the government is typically able to very easily show that the first two elements of the crime are present. Unlike the tax evasion statute found in IRC § 7201, the government does not have to show that there is an additional tax due and owing; however, this element is usually present none the less and the government rarely prosecutes taxpayers who fail to file, yet owe nothing.
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Old 01-23-2017, 08:46 PM   #74
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Lord knows, being ER'd means having some spare time So, since I no longer can get free Turbo Tax (Deluxe), what's the downside to paper filing? Obviously, there's the delay in getting any refund. But is that delay much longer?
Yes, I can easily afford the cost, but I never had to pay for it in the past. Being the cheapskate that I am, so far I haven't been able to fork over the $$$. Granted, I'm rusty from DIY tax filing after years of Turbo, but if I did it before I'm sure I can follow my old Turbo template.
Am I being unrealistic?
No clue why you might want to retire, then spend your time on something likely more annoying than your job was, and at which you are not an expert, to save a very modest amount of money, like maybe a so-so lunch for 2.

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Old 01-23-2017, 09:34 PM   #75
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How would you know that you have paid the tax that you owe unless you have prepared a return or at least done all the requisite calculations?
If one's income is solely from a job, withholding usually gets close to the proper amount of tax due. Even in other situations many people figure an amount to pay as estimated taxes. I wonder what percent of taxpayers who are supposed to file a return do not. The person I mentioned is likely not the only one.
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Old 01-23-2017, 09:38 PM   #76
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If one's income is solely from a job, withholding usually gets close to the proper amount of tax due. ...
Not really... if it did then there would be no need for those people to file a return and people would not be getting significant refunds with others bellyaching about significant amounts due.

Withholding being close to the proper amount of tax due is akin to a broken clock is correct twice a day.... pure coincidence and nothing more.
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Old 01-23-2017, 10:17 PM   #77
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If one's income is solely from a job, withholding usually gets close to the proper amount of tax due. Even in other situations many people figure an amount to pay as estimated taxes. I wonder what percent of taxpayers who are supposed to file a return do not. The person I mentioned is likely not the only one.
This is what I have found, mainly with state income tax returns where the impact of including the correct number of W-4 personal exemptions is strong because the withheld taxes are small.

I have been doing my ladyfriend's income taxes for 12 years. Once we got her W-4 (or state equivalent) personal exemptions straightened out in 2009, the amount of her refund of taxes due has been very small, never exceeding more than $45 refunded or $5 owed, always under 3% of her income tax liability. She is single with no dependents and takes the standard deduction which adds to the predictability. On the federal side, she intentionally underwithholds so she can take an interest-free loan of about $600 and use it to pay off some credit card debt. She has been taking the standard deduction since 2013 and had the W-4 exemptions been correct, she would have been well within $100 of her tax liability, or under 3%.
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Old 01-24-2017, 01:41 PM   #78
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I've had two incidents where I wished I did NOT file on paper.

1. Got a notice one year for penalties for not making appropriate estimated tax payments. Wrote back that it was all explained on Form 2210AL and I didn't owe the penalty. Month later, they said they have no record of the 2210AL. Turns out, they lost the paperwork before it got entered into the computer system.

2. Could not efile as my son's social security number had been used. Called and they said he claimed himself. I had filed his on paper, and knew he did not claim himself as I prepared the return and had a copy in front of me. Again, an error in transcribing into computer. Had to mail mine.

Lesson: much more likely for the IRS to error if file on paper and neither was in my favor. Both times it was an aggravation and cost me time I would have rather spent doing other things.
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Old 01-24-2017, 02:09 PM   #79
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If you need to override a software calculation you can't efile, well, at least Turbotax disallows it. Seems I find an issue in the software that needs overriding about once every 2 years.
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Old 01-24-2017, 02:31 PM   #80
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Use Turbo tax for calculations, however, only ever file paper copies. Much less likely to get audited and government has to work to get any data. With efile, your history is in the system forever. Easy to run algorithms on your data. Don't make it easy on them. Have never been audited (over 30 years) JMHO
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