IRS Announces Nationwide Expansion of IP PIN Program

September 24, 2020

The IRS Wage & Investment Division recently announced that starting in January 2021, the IRS will expand its IP PIN voluntary opt-in program nationwide. The six-digit IP PIN provides additional protection against tax-related identity theft.

How it works

  • Starting in January 2021, taxpayers may go to the Get an IP PIN tool on IRS.gov, pass Secure Access authentication and immediately access a six-digit IP PIN.
  • Do not file a Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit, for clients who are not tax-related identity theft victims and who are voluntarily opting into the program.
  • When prompted by tax preparation products, clients or their tax preparers must enter the IP PIN issued to the primary and/or secondary taxpayers or their dependents.
  • An electronic return without a correct IP PIN will be rejected; paper returns will be subject to greater scrutiny.
  • Taxpayers with either a Social Security number (SSN) or Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) who can verify their identities are eligible.
  • An IP PIN is valid for one calendar year. Clients must obtain a new IP PIN each year at the start of the filing seasonby accessing the account they created at www.irs.gov/ippin.
  • While currently there is no opt-out feature, the IRS is looking to add this feature later for taxpayers with online access.

Alternatives to online Get an IP PIN tool

  • Taxpayers who cannot authenticate their identities online and who made $72,000 or less may file Form 15227, which will be available January 2021. An IRS assistor will call taxpayers to ask a series of questions to verify their identities. An IP PIN will be issued at the start of the next calendar year.
  • Taxpayers who cannot authenticate online and who made more than $72,000 will have an option, still being vetted, to verify their identities in person at an IRS office. An IP PIN will be issued within three weeks if their identity is authenticated at a local office. 

No change for victims of tax-related identity theft

  • File a Form 14039 for clients whose e-filed returns reject because of a duplicate SSN filing; mail it with the client’s paper tax return.
  • The IRS will investigate the case and remove the fraudulent return.
  • Once the case is resolved, the client automatically will receive an IP PIN via postal mail at the start of the next calendar year.
  • Confirmed identity theft victims may not opt-out of the IP PIN program because of risks.

The IRS states that it may make additional changes as it receives feedback from taxpayers and tax professionals.