Click the link above to send us documents securely via an encrypted email. Click here for PDF instructions.
Please contact Sarah Hess for assistance or questions.
Brush Bernard is excited to offer SafeSend Returns™ as our electronic delivery method for your tax returns.
Benefits of using SafeSend Returns:
Receive Your Tax Returns Securely and with Ease:SafeSend Returns™ allows us to deliver your return securely and walks you through the steps of processing your return via computer, smartphone or tablet.
For Individuals:SafeSend Returns™ allows you to e-sign your federal and state tax returns, receive tax payment reminder emails, and the ability to download a copy of your tax return.
For Businesses:SafeSend Returns™ allows you to e-sign your federal and state tax returns, receive payment reminder e-mails, conveniently distribute K-1’s via email, and the ability to download a copy of your tax return.
How Does the SafeSend Returns Process Work?
Receive an email from Brush Bernard at firstname.lastname@example.org. To prevent it from being categorized as spam, add this e-mail address to your safe list.
Access your tax return by clicking on the secure link.
Answer the ID verification questions to review & complete your tax return.
Electronically sign & return your e-File Authorization Form (Form 8879).
Yes. Email notifications will be sent from Brush Bernard at email@example.com. To prevent the email from getting filtered to spam/junk, we recommend adding these email addresses to your safe list.
The questions SafeSend Returns asks are knowledge-based questions pulled from government and credit sources. You may be asked questions such as where you lived in a given year, or when you bought your car or home. In the event the questions do not apply to you, simply choose the answer that accurately reflects this. If you don’t remember the answers to the questions, or you answer incorrectly, you won’t be able to electronically sign your e-file authorization form(s). You can instead print, sign and return your e-file authorization form(s) to Brush Bernard.
Yes. If you’re using a smartphone or tablet, you may not be able to download and print your return, but you’ll be able to review and e-sign it. You can always download and print your return from a desktop computer at a later date.
SafeSend Returns allows you to electronically sign your e-file authorization form(s), but it won’t submit your return to the IRS. Once signed, Brush Bernard is automatically notified, and we will then complete the filing process for you, including submission to the IRS.
For spouses filing jointly, there are a few ways to sign via SafeSend Returns:
If both spouses have an email address on file, both will receive an email with a link to view the return and sign the e-file authorization form(s). First, one spouse will receive the link with identity verification questions specific to him/her. He or she will sign the e-file authorization form(s) and input the spouse’s email address, which will send an email link to the second spouse. The second spouse will answer identity verification questions specific to him or her and then sign the form(s).
If only one spouse has an email address on file, that spouse will first receive the link with identity verification questions specific to him/her. He or she will sign the e-file authorization form(s) and then enter an email address for the second spouse. The second spouse will then receive the email link with identity verification questions specific to him/her. Once the second spouse electronically signs the e-file authorization form(s), Brush Bernard will be notified that signing is complete.
If a couple shares an email address, the primary signer will first receive a link with identity verification questions specific to him/her. After the primary signer signs the e-file authorization form(s), he/she can then enter the shared email address again. A new link will be sent with identity verification questions specific to the second spouse.
Brush Bernard will deliver your dependent’s return using SafeSend Returns. However, most dependents may not have sufficient government and financial data available to successfully complete the electronic signature process.
Therefore, Brush Bernard will generally deliver those returns in a manner set up for manual signature. The intended forms will require you to return it through SafeSend Returns, via email at Sarah@BrushBernard.com, or fax it back at 707-433-4123 to Brush Bernard.
Federal law requires you to maintain copies of your tax returns and supporting documents for three years. This is called the “three-year law” and leads many people to believe they’re safe provided they retain their documents for this period.
However, if the IRS believes you have significantly underreported your income (by 25 percent or more), or believes there may be indication of fraud, it may go back six years in an audit. To be safe, use the following guidelines.
Create a Backup Set of Records and Store Them Electronically. Keeping a backup set of records – including, for example, bank statements, tax returns, insurance policies, etc. – is easier than ever now that many financial institutions provide statements and documents electronically, and much financial information is available on the Internet.
Even if the original records are provided only on paper, they can be scanned and converted to a digital format. Once the documents are in electronic form, taxpayers can download them to a backup storage device, such as an external hard drive, or burn them onto a CD or DVD (don’t forget to label it).
You might also consider online backup, which is the only way to ensure that data is fully protected. With online backup, files are stored in another region of the country, so that if a hurricane or other natural disaster occurs, documents remain safe.
Caution: Identity theft is a serious threat in today’s world, and it is important to take every precaution to avoid it. After it is no longer necessary to retain your tax records, financial statements, or any other documents with your personal information, you should dispose of these records by shredding them and not disposing of them by merely throwing them away in the trash.