There may be many things you don’t like about the way the world keeps moving away from personal interactions and towards the convenience of automated systems, but it is hard to see anything wrong with using E-file to submit your taxes. If you use software to prepare your taxes it is a very simple thing to submit your completed documents over the Internet. During the last tax season over 100 million people chose this route.
As part of any software package you have the option of either printing out your returns and mailing them in the traditional fashion, or sending them electronically. The advantage of electronic returns is speed. When you e-file you reduce the period between filing and refund dramatically. Expect that if your submission is accepted by the IRS you will receive your refund in a matter of a couple of weeks – less than a third of the expected time of a mailed refund.
If you owe taxes you can pay online as well, using a credit or debit card.
E-filing is now available regardless of the complexity of your filing status. Early incarnations only allowed the most basic of forms to be submitted electronically. The IRS offers numerous free tax preparation software options online, so you don’t even have to purchase your own. Filing is free on the Federal level; however, on the state level you may have to pay a nominal fee to e-file. As it took the Federal government a few years to reach this status, one can reasonably expect that the states will follow suit soon.