preparation, e-filing — January 30, 2017

3 Common E-filing Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

by Susannah McQuitty

A girl using a stickered laptop in a café.

You’ve heard us talk about the benefits of doing your taxes online instead of on paper, and this won’t be the last time you’ll hear it, either (enter ominous music – kidding, we’re not that weird). But it’s true; when you e-file, you get improved accuracy, a much simpler process, and fewer chances of mistakes.

Even though our e-file system is equipped to catch common errors, there are a few points you should be extra careful of when entering data specific to yourself to save the hassle of tax filing delays.

A stickered laptop, phone, and coffee cup coaster on a tile table in a coffee shop

Social Security Numbers

It’s common knowledge that you can’t be too careful with your Social Security Number, but it doesn’t hurt to remind yourself and reinforce the idea.

When you file, enter your Social Security Number and double check to make sure it’s correct and in the right box – especially if you’re married and filing a joint return. Mistyping a Social Security Number is incredibly easy to avoid, so it only makes sense to take a little extra time to get it right.

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Matching names

This one can be easy to miss, especially if you don’t usually go by the name on your Social Security card or birth certificate. When you file, don’t shorten your name, and be sure to include your full name as it appears on your Social Security card. The IRS gets their name database from the Social Security Administration (SSA), and the name you provide on your tax return must match that database or your return will not get accepted. If there have been any name changes – you got married, divorced, or simply changed your legal name – be sure to contact the SSA at or (800) 772-1213.

A girl checks her phone while using her laptop in a coffee shop.

Bank routing and account number

If you choose to have your refund delivered by direct deposit (which we highly recommend – it’s the fastest way to get your refund money), going over the long number sequences again is a good idea. After all, you want to make sure that your routing and account numbers are correct so that your refund isn’t delayed.




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