The IRS is asking tax professionals to spread the word to their clients about the NEW voluntary IP-PIN program.
IP-PINs are six-digit numbers assigned to eligible taxpayers to help prevent the misuse of their SSNs on fraudulent federal income tax returns. When you have an IP PIN, it prevents someone else from filing a tax return with your SSN.
The IP-PIN acts as an authentication number to validate the correct owner of the Social Security number(s) or ITIN(s) listed on the tax return. If an IP-PIN isn’t entered correctly on a e-filed return, the IRS will reject the return and you will need to enter the correct IP-PIN to e-file it again. For paper filed return, if your client has an IP PIN, is the primary and/or secondary taxpayer, and you fail to enter the IP-PIN correctly, the return will take longer to process while the IRS validates the information. This increased validation is for your clients’ protection, but will delay any expected.
An IP-PIN is valid for one calendar year and an individual must obtain a new IP PIN each year.
If your client is a confirmed victim of identity theft and the IRS resolved the tax account issues, the IRS will mail your client an IP-PIN each year.
Starting in 2021, taxpayers may voluntarily opt into the IP-PIN program as a proactive way to protect themselves from tax-related identity theft.
If your client wants to apply, they must pass a rigorous identity verification process. Spouses and dependents are also eligible for an IP PIN if they can pass the identity proofing process.
To voluntarily apply for an IP-PIN, an individual may be able to sign up online through their IRS account. If your client is volunteering for the IP-PIN Opt-In program and cannot successfully validate his/her identity through the Get an IP-PIN tool, they can file Form 15227, Application for an Identity Protection Personal Identification Number.
If your client cannot verify his/her identity online or with the Form 15227, he/she may make an appointment for an in-person meeting at a Taxpayer Assistance Center.
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