3.42.5  IRS of Individual Income Tax Returns (Cont. 1)

3.42.5.9 
General Information and Overview of Signatures for IRS Returns

3.42.5.9.14 
Resolving Invalid Document Count Error Condition

3.42.5.9.14.2 
"Duplicate DLN" Error Message

3.42.5.9.14.2.1  (10-01-2010)
"DLN Gap" Error Message

  1. When a gap exists in the serial numbers of transcribed 8453 DLN data within a block, this error message occurs. Do the following:

    1. Check ISRP input records (Form 2345, etc.) or with Numbering. If ISRP and Numbering indicate a DLN was assigned, and already input by ISRP.

    2. Request block from Files.

    3. Research IDRS CC R8453 to determine which documents posted with an incorrect Form 8453 DLN.

    4. Perform a random sampling using IDRS CC R8453 to determine where the problem occurred. (Continue with sampling until the problem can be identified).

    5. If the 8453 DLN that was input does not match the DLN on the form, correct the 8453 DLN record using CC ELFUP Action Code C.

    6. Send the completed blocks to Files.

      Note:

      All documents in the block may need to be researched using IDRS CC R8453 to find all incorrect DLN(s).

  2. Check the document count for partial blocks. ISRP is able to change DLNs within a block. This will cause 2 separate DLNs to generate on the CPL. The 2 blocks can be identified by similarities and the document count equal to "100" . Example: CPL will have a DLN 18259-051-00900-4 with a document count of 60 and 18259-050-00 and a document count of 40.

3.42.5.9.15  (11-12-2014)
Correction History Listing

  1. TRDB-R8453 will create a daily Correction History Listing of corrected 8453 SSNs and DLNs. The Correction History Listing will be researched using IDRS CC R8453, definer AU2, Definer Code AU2 can also be researched with an employee-ID. Totals may be researched using IDRS CC R8453 with definer TT2. Correction History for a taxpayer's 8453 Record will also be displayed using CC R8453 with a SSN definer.

  2. For an INVALID SSN ERROR, the 8453 SSN input to IDRS CC ELFUP must be zeros.

  3. For a DUPLICATE SSN/DLN ERROR, all instances of the duplicated 8453 DLN and SSN within the Campus will be applied with the exception of the earliest occurrence.

  4. For CC ELFUP Action Code A, the change status will be identified as APPLIED and the action description ADD for each input.

  5. For CC ELFUP Action Code C, the change status will be identified as APPLIED and the action description CORRECTED when the ELFUP 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN is equal to the transcribed 8453 SSN and the 8453 DLN. The change status will be identified as NOT FOUND when the ELFUP 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN are not equal to the 8453 SSN and DLN which are stored on the TRDB database and displayed within IDRS CC R8453.

  6. For CC ELFUP Action Code D, the change status will be identified as APPLIED and the action description VOIDED when the ELFUP 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN is equal to the transcribed 8453 SSN and the 8453 DLN. The change status will be identified as NOT FOUND when the ELFUP 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN are not equal to the 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN which are stored on the TRDB database and displayed within IDRS CC R8453.

  7. For CC ELFUPR, the change status will be identified as APPLIED and the action description REPLACED when the ELFUP 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN are equal to the transcribed 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN. The change status will be identified as NOT FOUND when a transcribed 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN are not equal to the 8453 SSN and 8453 DLN which are stored on the TRDB database and displayed within IDRS CC R8453.

  8. For invalid DLN blocks that are re-numbered and re-input through ISRP, the change status will be identified as "RE-INPUT" .

3.42.5.9.16  (10-01-2010)
IDRS Command Code R8453 With a SSN Definer

  1. Access to an individual taxpayer's Form 8453/Form 8453-OL Record may be researched using IDRS CC R8453 with a valid SSN definer.

  2. Data displayed for the taxpayer will include:

    • 8453 correction history

    • 8453 errors

    • TRDB generated charge-outs

    • the primary (and secondary) name

    • the corresponding electronic return spouse SSN

    • filing status

    • return DLN

    • return DCN

    • return received date

    • input source

    • adjusted gross income

    • total tax

    • amount withheld

    • refund/balance due amounts

    • incomplete Form 8453/Form 8453-OL received (if applicable)

    • letter dates (if applicable)

    • undeliverable Letter 2936/Letter 2936A (if applicable)

3.42.5.9.17  (11-12-2014)
Form 8453 Attachments

  1. Acceptable attachments to be associated with Tax Year 2014 Form 8453 Transmittal include:

    • Form 1098-C, Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes

    • Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative (or POA that states that the agent is granted authority to sign the return)

    • Form 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method

    • Form 3468, Investment Credit Historic Structure Certificate

    • Form 4136, Credit for Federal Tax Paid on Fuels

    • Form 5713, International Boycott Report

    • Form 8283, Noncash Charitable Contributions, Section A, (if any statement or qualified appraisal is required) or Section B

    • Form 8332, Release of Claim to Exemption for Child of Divorced or Separated Parents

    • Form 8858, Information Return of U.S. Persons with Respect to Foreign Disregarded Entities

    • Form 8864, Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Fuels Credit

    • Form 8949, Sales and Other Dispositions of Capital Assets

  2. Acceptable attachments to be associated with Tax Year 2013 Form 8453 Transmittal include:

    • Form 1098-C, Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes

    • Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative (or POA that states that the agent is granted authority to sign the return)

    • Form 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method

    • Form 3468, Investment Credit Historic Structure Certificate

    • Form 4136, Credit for Federal Tax Paid on Fuels

    • Form 5713, International Boycott Report

    • Form 8283, Noncash Charitable Contributions, Section A, (if any statement or qualified appraisal is required) or Section B

    • Form 8332, Release of Claim to Exemption for Child of Divorced or Separated Parents

    • Form 8858, Information Return of U.S. Persons with Respect to Foreign Disregarded Entities

    • Form 8864, Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Fuels Credit

    • Form 8885, Health Coverage Tax Credit

    • Form 8949, Sales and Other Dispositions of Capital Assets

  3. Acceptable attachments to be associated with Tax Year 2012 and Tax Year 2011 Form 8453 Transmittal include:

    • Appendix A, Statement by Taxpayer Using the Procedures in Rev. Proc. 2009-20

    • Form 1098-C, Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes

    • Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative (or POA that states that the agent is granted authority to sign the return)

    • Form 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method

    • Form 3468, Investment Credit Historic Structure Certificate

    • Form 4136, Credit for Federal Tax Paid on Fuels

    • Form 5713, International Boycott Report

    • Form 8283, Noncash Charitable Contributions, Section A, (if any statement or qualified appraisal is required) or Section B

    • Form 8332, Release of Claim to Exemption for Child of Divorced or Separated Parents

    • Form 8858, Information Return of U.S. Persons with Respect to Foreign Disregarded Entities

    • Form 8864, Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Fuels Credit

    • Form 8885, Health Coverage Tax Credit

    • Form 8949, Sales and Other Dispositions of Capital Assets

  4. Acceptable attachments to be associated with Tax Year 2010 and 2009 Form 8453 Transmittal include:

    • Appendix A, Statement by Taxpayer Using the Procedures in Rev. Proc. 2009-20

    • Form 1098-C, Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes

    • Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative (or POA that states that the agent is granted authority to sign the return)

    • Form 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method

    • Form 3468, Investment Credit Historic Structure Certificate

    • Form 4136, Credit for Federal Tax Paid on Fuels

    • Form 5713, International Boycott Report

    • Form 8283, Noncash Charitable Contributions, Section A, (if any statement or qualified appraisal is required) or Section B

    • Form 8332, Release of Claim to Exemption for Child of Divorced or Separated Parents

    • Form 8858, Information Return of U.S. Persons with Respect to Foreign Disregarded Entities

    • Form 8864, Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Fuels Credit

    • Form 8885, Health Coverage Tax Credit

    • Schedule D-1, Continuation Sheet for Schedule D (Form 1040)

    .

  5. If attachment(s) to Form 8453 Transmittal are received and there is no record of a Form 8453 prepare an appropriate tax year's Form 8453 and attach the document(s) to it. If attachments were for a prior tax year, follow IRM 3.42.5.9.4.3, Procedures for Prior Year Transmittal Forms 8453. If attachment(s) are for the current processing year, route the Form 8453 to Receipt and Control.

3.42.5.9.18  (09-06-2012)
Reviewing and Processing Substitute Forms 8453

  1. Substitute Form 8453 are permitted if they have been submitted to Headquarters for review and approval and must meet specifications outlined in Publication 1167, General Rules and Specifications for Substitute Forms and Schedules.

  2. When the requests are received, an analyst reviews the form to determine if it can be used as a substitute. When a form is approved, a letter is sent to Providers to notify them of the approval and the number assigned to the substitute form. This number should be located on the bottom left corner of the form. If the form is rejected, a letter is also sent advising the Provider of the reasons for rejection.

  3. Receipt and Control Operations will send unprocessable substitute forms to e-help. When received, the Tax Examiner will call the Form 8453 analyst at Headquarters (with manager's approval) to verify that the form has been approved.

    If ... Then ...
    the form has been approved, send the Form 8453 to the Numbering Unit to be processed in the same manner as an official IRS form.
    the form was not approved,
    1. call the Provider and advise that an unapproved form has been submitted. Contact the Provider to secure another Form 8453 from taxpayer.

    2. send the Form 8453 to the Numbering Unit for processing.

    the form cannot be processed, contact the ERO to secure another Form 8453 from the taxpayer.
  4. Monitor Providers who continuously submit unapproved substitute forms using local procedures and report to management to determine further action.

3.42.5.10  (10-01-2013)
Print Requests for Electronic Returns and Form 8453/Form 8453-OL

  1. IMF electronic returns are assigned unique DLNs. The Filing Location Code (FLC) in each DLN can be used to identify where an electronic return was filed. For example, DLN 76211–110–036XX-X would indicate an electronic return was filed at Austin Submission Processing Campus.

  2. After an electronic return has been accepted into the Electronic Filing System (EFS), it can be viewed via IDRS CC TRDBV.

  3. IDRS CC TRDBV should be used for initial research on tax accounts.

3.42.5.10.1  (10-01-2013)
Processing Requests for Form 8453/Form 8453-OL

  1. Form 8453/Form 8453-OL are processed by a unique DLN. This DLN is not the same as the return DLN.

  2. Form 8453/Form 8453-OL are numbered with Tax Class 2 and Document Code 59. The Filing Location Code will be the same as for a paper document for that Submission Processing Campus.

    Tax Year 1999 through Tax Year 2001 Returns Filed Form 8453/8453-OL Submissions
    Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and all APO/FPO addresses (except Asian/Pacific) Andover (FLC 16) Andover (FLC 08)
    Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Wisconsin Austin (FLC 76) Austin (FLC 18)
    Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, South Carolina, West Virginia Cincinnati (FLC 38) Cincinnati (FLC 17)
    Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee Memphis (FLC 72) Memphis (FLC 49)
    Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and all Asian/Pacific APO/FPO addresses Ogden (FLC 93) Ogden (FLC 29)
    Tax Year 2002 Returns Filed Form 8453/8453-OL Submissions
    Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and all APO/FPO addresses (except Asian/Pacific) Andover (FLC 16) Andover (08)
    Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Wisconsin Austin (FLC 76) Austin (FLC 18)
    Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, South Carolina, West Virginia Cincinnati (FLC 38) Andover (FLC 08)
    Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee Memphis (FLC 72) Memphis (FLC 49)
    Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and all Asian/Pacific APO/FPO Ogden (FLC 93) Austin (FLC 18)
  3. For Tax Year 2003 and subsequent, the Form 8453/Form 8453-OL DLN information, if available, is obtained by using IDRS CC TRDBV or CC R8453. After the Form 8453/Form 8453-OL DLN is obtained, IDRS CC ESTAB is used to request the Form 8453/Form 8453-OL from Files.

  4. For Tax Year 2002 and prior, Form 8453/Form 8453-OL DLN information is no longer available using CC ELFRQ. If no DLN information is available then Form 8453/Form 8453-OL cannot be requested from Files.

3.42.5.10.2  (10-01-2013)
Attaching Documents to Electronic Returns

  1. When the taxpayer or ERO submits miscellaneous documents or correspondence to e-help that requires association with an electronic return, the miscellaneous documents must be associated with the renumbered return DLN or the Form 8453/Form 8453-OL DLN. Documents or correspondence cannot be attached to the electronic return DLN.

    Note:

    Only required supporting documents listed on the Form 8453 should be associated with Form 8453/Form 8453-OL. Return original copies of marriage documents, birth and death certificates to the taxpayer or ERO. Other documents can be discarded as classified waste.

  2. If the return has been renumbered:

    1. Complete Form 9856, Attachment Alert, using the renumbered DLN,

    2. Route to the Files Unit where the Form 8453 was filed.

  3. If the return has not been renumbered, research CC TRDBV for the Form 8453 DLN:

    1. If a Form 8453 DLN is present, prepare Form 9856, Attachment Alert, using the Form 8453 DLN and send the materials to be associated to the Files Unit.

    2. If a Form 8453 DLN is not present or the electronic return was filed with a PIN signature method, route to Adjustments requesting input of a TC 290.00 adjustment, using a non-refile blocking series and route to the File Unit upon completion of the adjustment action.

3.42.5.11  (10-01-2013)
Federal/State Electronic Filing

  1. Federal/State Electronic Filing is a cooperative one-stop filing program between Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and state tax administration agencies. MeF is the only platform for electronic filing.

3.42.5.11.1  (10-01-2010)
Introduction to Federal/State e-file

  1. Federal/State e-file is one of the Service's programs in support of burden reduction for the tax preparation community and the taxpayers it represents.

  2. The IRS functions primarily as a "data conduit" for state returns filed electronically. The term "data conduit" is used to define a strictly controlled process to receive, temporarily store and then provide correctly formatted data to the state.

3.42.5.11.1.1  (11-12-2014)
Third Party Data Store Extract for State Tax Agencies

  1. Most Federal/State participating states and direct electronic filing States have indicated a need for an information subset of the Third Party Data Base containing the Master records. This data is needed to assist the States in determining whether a Provider has been accepted in the IRS Electronic Filing Program, as required for State e-file participation.

  2. Many States automatically accept Providers accepted by IRS without requiring a separate application. Other States require a copy of the IRS application and/or the acceptance letter prior to accepting the Provider in the State program.

  3. A comprehensive extract of Electronic Filer Identification Number (EFINs) are made available for the States agencies the first Monday of each month. Thereafter, weekly files containing only records that have changed or new records will be posted. All EFIN extracts are placed in the State Extract data base in TPDS and are available to the States via e-Services. State coordinators must register with e-Services to gain access to the files.

3.42.5.11.1.2  (11-12-2014)
Disclosure of Tax Return Information-Guidelines

  1. The IRS can disclose tax return information under IRC Section 6103(d) to the state tax administration agencies. The IRS Office of Governmental Liaison and Disclosure has provided guidance to the Disclosure Managers (through Governmental Liaison Staff) to incorporate into the Federal/State implementing agreements, the ability for IRS to make additional disclosures during Federal/State Electronic Filing.

  2. The following guidelines apply:

    1. In accordance with IRC Section 6103(d), the IRS will not initiate disclosures of federal tax information but will respond to requests for return information from participating states consistent with appropriate agreements.

    2. The overall disclosure accounting requirement for the Federal/State Electronic Filing program is being met by an automated procedure. This consists of 2 year-to-date recirculating output files from ELF47. The ELF–FED–STATE–FILE, ELF4750, contains a record of each primary SSN for each accepted state return sent to the Federal/State e-file state. The ELF–DISCL–MSAM–FILE, ELF4751, contains a record for each Federal/State e-file state consisting of 2 accumulated counts: one for each primary SSN and one for each associated spouse SSN accepted through the e-file programs.

    3. Form 5466-B, Multiple Record of Disclosures, will be used to account for all disclosures made to the state tax administration agency. Local procedures vary, so the Submission Processing Campus staff should discuss these procedures with the Disclosure Help Desk at 866–591–0860. The Disclosure Help Desk number is for internal use only.

    4. For additional information, see IRM 11.3.37-1, Most Frequently Used ADP Source Codes Tax Systems of Records (Individuals Covered by the Act); IRM 11.3.37-2, ADP Source Codes - Tax Systems of Records (Systems Governed by the Act); and IRM 11.3.37-3, ADP Source Code-Tax Information Not Governed by the Act.

3.42.5.11.1.3  (11-12-2014)
Misdirected Federal/State Mail

  1. Misdirected mail (signature forms, balance due forms, etc.) can cause delays to tax processing at the federal and state levels. This could have a negative impact on the timely processing of the taxpayer's return.

  2. If mail is received in e-help Desk that belongs to a state agency, forward to that agency immediately.

3.42.5.12  (09-06-2012)
Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS)

  1. The Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS) is a free service offered by the U.S. Department of Treasury. EFTPS balancing and error resolution operations is done at the Ogden Submission Processing Campus (OSPC).

  2. For complete EFTPS procedures, see IRM 3.17.277, Electronic Payments.

3.42.5.12.1  (09-06-2012)
General Information on EFTPS

  1. EFTPS offers the following integrated e-file/e-pay options:

    • Electronic Funds Withdrawal (EFW) (direct debit)

    • Credit/debit cards

    Note:

    Visit www.irs.gov/e-pay for a list of the types of taxes that can be paid by credit/debit card and electronic funds withdrawal.

  2. The following is EFTPS information on the Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) number, Document Locator Number (DLN), and Command Code EFTPS research. This information can be used to research credit/debit card payments and EFW (direct debit) payments.

3.42.5.12.1.1  (11-12-2014)
Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Number

  1. The financial agent assigns a 15 digit EFT number. The EFT number is used as the unique identifier and to research payments on the Master File and IDRS. Do not use the DLN to perform research on EFTPS transactions. The EFT number is configured as shown in IRM 3.17.277, Electronic Payments. The Payment Method (position 2 of the EFT) is "6" for credit/debit card payments and "0" for EFW (direct debit) payments.

  2. The Tape Edit Processor (TEP) assigns 2 additional leading digits to denote the Submission Processing Campus Code of processing (e.g., 29 for Ogden; 49 for Memphis) to make an EFT number of 17 positions for Master File and IDRS research (except command code EFTPS).

3.42.5.12.1.2  (11-12-2014)
EFTPS Payment Research

  1. Use Command Code EFTPS to research credit/debit card payments and EFW payments from the EFTPS database. Select one of 3 definers to initiate research. (You will first identify the EFT number by using IDRS command codes such as IMFOLT. Each electronic payment will have an associated EFT number.)

    • Use definer E to request a specific 15-digit EFT number.

    • Use definer R to request a specific reference number (not valid for bulk provider payments other than credit or debit cards). The payment year must be input.

    • Use definer T to request a specific Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN), payment date, and amount.

  2. See IRM 2.3.70, Command Code EFTPS, for complete procedures for Command Code EFTPS.

3.42.5.13  (11-12-2014)
Time Reporting

  1. To capture the cost of e-filing and compare it with paper filing, time must always be reported accurately on Form 3081, Employee Time Report.

  2. Incident Management are turned in under existing procedures to report volumes. For e-help Desk Program Code 42730, use call volumes from the ASPECT system.

  3. The following function codes should be used by the e-file Unit:

    • e-file Clerical-760

    • e-file Tax Examiners-750

    • Systems Support-640

3.42.5.14  (10-01-2010)
Contingency Planning Guidelines and Procedures For Emergency Processing of Electronically Filed Returns

  1. These contingency planning guidelines and procedures are designed to create a state of readiness that will provide an immediate response to a worst case scenario affecting e-file. The disaster would involve loss of the facility or access to the facility. The procedures are also adaptable to lesser disasters such as loss of a single area or piece of equipment. These guidelines only address e-filing processing. They do not address labor or contractual disputes that would affect processing.

3.42.5.14.1  (10-01-2013)
General Information

  1. These procedures will be implemented at the discretion of the Submission Processing Campus Director and/or Computing Center Director. When implementation is necessary, the Submission Processing Campus Director will contact the Directors, Field Assistance, Return Preparer Office, Chief Information Officer (Modernization Information Technology Services), and Communications. Communications will be provided with specific information, as described in this IRM.

  2. The unaffected Enterprise Computing Center will become the backup for the disabled center. ECC-MTB processes electronic returns for ANSPC, AUSPC, and PSPC. ECC-MEM processes returns for KCSC and FSPC.

  3. If a Submission Processing Campus encounters a disaster that affects a work area, follow the Disaster Recovery Plan/Contingency Plan created by Electronic Products and Services Support (EPSS) HQ and the e-help Desk Operation.

  4. The e-file Bulletin Board can be reached by dialing (859) 292-0137 (requires modem).

  5. All e-file related mail will be handled according to each Submission Processing Campus's Disaster Recovery Plan.

3.42.5.14.2  (10-01-2013)
Submission Processing Campus Director Responsibilities

  1. The Submission Processing Campus Director will contact the Director, Electronic Products and Services Support (EPSS) Director, Return Preparer Office (RPO), Chief Information Officer (CIO), and the Submission Processing Campus Communications Office.

  2. In the event of a backlog, the Submission Processing Campus Director will detail additional personnel from Submission Processing Campuses and Territory Offices to the affected campus.

  3. If there is a loss of all telephone lines in the Submission Processing Campus and it is determined the loss of telephone service will be for more than 24 hours, the contingency plan can be implemented at the option of the Submission Processing Campus Director.

3.42.5.14.2.1  (11-12-2014)
Submission Processing Campus e-file Coordinator or Responsibilities

  1. The affected Submission Processing Campus e-file Coordinator will immediately notify:

    • The affected Area e-file Coordinators,

    • The local Communications Office and

    • The local Information Systems (IS) Help Desk, if applicable.

  2. Contact all active electronic transmitters via Quick Alerts, Digital Daily, or telephone.

  3. Update the backup Submission Processing Campus's FEPS site designator to include the disabled site.

  4. Make necessary arrangements with the local telephone company for repairs at the affected site.

3.42.5.14.2.2  (10-01-2010)
Area Office Responsibilities

  1. The office of the Director, Communications & Liaison will contact the Area Public Affairs Office and the Territories in the affected areas to advise them of the situation.

  2. The affected Area e-file Coordinators will contact their counterparts.

3.42.5.14.2.3  (11-12-2014)
Headquarters Responsibilities

  1. The Director, Submission Processing, in conjunction with the e-help Unit, will identify the date from which both federal and state returns must be refiled.

  2. The Director, Submission Processing, will include the information outlined below :

    • New phone number to use for filing returns

    • Address to mail Form 8453

    • Date Providers should begin filing returns at the backup site;

    • Date that both federal returns, state returns and Providers need to refile returns, already filed at the disabled Submission Processing Campus, with the backup site and

    • The backup Submission Processing Campus's e-help Desk and e-help Unit phone numbers.

  3. The Director, Submission Processing, will contact the Federal/State Electronic Filing state(s) served by the disabled Submission Processing Campus and advise them of the situation and to access the Federal/State e-file library for further information.

  4. The Director, Submission Processing, will notify the Communications Office.

3.42.5.15  (11-12-2014)
Related Forms, Letters, Publications, Reports and IDRS Command Codes

  1. The following is a list of frequently used forms, letters and publications associated with e-help Desk Tax Examiners:

    • Form 2275- Records Request, Charge and Recharge

    • Form 2848- Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative

    • Form 4251- Return Charge-Out (IDRS)

    • Form 8453- U.S. Individual Income Tax Transmittal for an IRS e-file return

    • Form 8878- IRS e-file Signature Authorization for Extension of Time To File

    • Form 8879- IRS e-file Signature Authorization

    • Form 9856- Attachment Alert

    • Form 12305- Routing Slip

    • Letter 2939(SC) - Returning Form 8453 When no Return was Filed.

    • Publication 1345- Handbook for Authorized IRS e-file Providers of Individual Income Tax Returns

    • Publication 1436- Test Package for Electronic Filing of Individual Income Tax Returns

    • Publication 3112- IRS e-file Application and Participation

    • Publication 4164- Modernization e-File (MeF) Guide for Software Developers and Transmitters

  2. The following is a list of frequently used IDRS Command Codes:

    • ACTON - Establish a control base on IDRS

    • CFINK - Researches the CAF to determine if a Power of Attorney is on file for a taxpayer

    • DUPOL - Extracts taxpayer information from the Duplicate TIN Database

    • ELFUP - Adds or deletes an SSN or changes a Form 8453 DLN

    • ELFUPR - ELF 8453 Replacement SSN Records

    • ENMOD - Provides name, address, and other entity information for a taxpayer

    • ERINV - Determines if a return is in the ERS Inventory

    • FFINQ - Provides fact of filing information for the current year

    • IMFOB - Provides an on-line research of nationwide entity, tax and electronic fund transfer data information posted to the Individual Master File

    • IMFOL - Provides an on-line research of nationwide entity and tax data information posted to the Individual Master File

    • INOLE - Researches for a valid SSN and entity data nationwide. S = specific, T = TIN, or G = general information

    • MFREQ - Requests a tax module and related entity data from the Master File

    • NAMES - Searches for a SSN for both Primary and Secondary filer

    • NAMEI - Searches Individual Master File for a SSN

    • R8453 - ELF 8453 DLN

    • REINF - Provides refund information for a taxpayer

    • RTVUE - Displays a screen layout of Form 1040 data

    • SUMRY - Provides all modules for a taxpayer; will default to CC REINF if no open modules present

    • TRDBV - Provides information processed by IRS e-file. States corrections made by ERS, GMF and GUF. Displays information; as suspended, corrected, posted, and history information

    • TXMOD - Provides a display of tax period information for a specific SSN

    • UPTIN - Provides a display of a tax period information for a specific SSN; maintains the unpostable for display purposes for 90 days after the unpostable has been closed

3.42.5.16  (11-12-2014)
IRS e-file for 1040 Modernized e-File (MeF)

  1. This section of the Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) provides an overview of the Individual Master File (IMF) Form 1040 Modernized Electronic Filing (MeF) System. The information contained in this subsection of the manual includes:

    • MeF System Functionality

    • IRS Three-phase Strategy Rollout

    • Benefits of the MeF System

    • MeF Processing System Components

    • Employee User Portal

    • Integrated Enterprise Portal

    • How MeF Systems are Approved for Electronic Filing

    • Security During Transmissions

    • How Tax Preparation Software is Approved for Electronic Filing

    • Prepare and Originate MeF Returns

    • Transmission to IRS

    • MeF Processing

    • Modernized Tax Return Database (M-TRDB)

  2. General information found throughout IRM 3.42.5, IRS e-file Individual Income Tax Returns, must be used in conjunction with this subsection to resolve account related issues or concerns of the Authorized IRS e-file Provider.

3.42.5.16.1  (11-12-2014)
MeF System Functionality

  1. The MeF system replaces the current IRS tax return filing technology with a modernized, internet-based electronic filing platform. This transaction based system allows tax return originators to transmit returns electronically to the IRS in real-time, improving turnaround times.

  2. MeF allows for a paperless process, receiving transmissions in an Extensible Markup Language (XML) format. Returns flow into the MeF System through the internet. All transmissions originate from internet filers (received through the Integrated Enterprise Portal (IEP) infrastructure) and are delivered to the MeF system located in the Enterprise Computing Center at Martinsburg (ECC-MTB) for processing.

  3. The MeF e-file Program is transmitted electronically using the following two transmission methods:

    • Application 2 Application (A2A) and

    • Internet Filing Application (IFA)

3.42.5.16.2  (09-06-2012)
IRS Three-phase Strategy Rollout

  1. The first phase of 1040 MeF began February 2010 and included Form 1040, Form 4868 and 21 most common filed Form 1040 related forms and schedules to the MeF platform.

    Forms for 1040 Modernized e-File (MeF) Program
    Form 1040 Schedule EIC Form 2210 Form 8829
    Schedule A Schedule M (new) Form 2441 Form 8863
    Schedule B Schedule R Form 4562 Form 8880
    Schedule C Schedule SE Form 4868 Form 8888
    Schedule D Form 1099-R Form 8283 Form W-2
    Schedule E Form 2106 Form 8812  
  2. The second phase of 1040 MeF began in January 2011 and included additional volume of the same forms as the first release, additional hardware and MeF code optimization.

  3. The third phase of 1040 MeF occurred in January 2012 and included the remaining 156 forms, 75 of which are shared with BMF, under the current individual e-file.

3.42.5.16.3  (11-12-2014)
Benefits of the MeF System

  1. The following lists the benefits of using the MeF system and also explains how e-file processing is impacted:

    • Faster acknowledgements - Transmissions are processed upon receipt and acknowledgments are returned in near real-time. No more waiting for once or twice daily system processing cycles.

    • Standardizes the XML schema format across all MeF-related form families eliminating the need for separate modification to multiple schema packages.

    • Provides a "universal description" of common forms, eliminating variations in record layout formats.

    • Stores accepted tax return data on the Modernized Tax Return Data Base (M-TRDB), and allows internal viewing of the return through the Return Request and Display Subsystem.

    • More Explicit Error Conditions - Error explanations (Business Rules) pinpoint the location of the error in the return and provide complete information in the acknowledgement file that is passed back to the transmitter. Under the current 1040 e-file program, one error code may apply to multiple types of e-file error conditions. MeF error codes use simple wording to clarify each error that triggers a rejection (atomic rules).

    • Uses SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol), the industry standard protocol for XML transmissions, eliminating TranA, TranB, Recap and Summary Records required of IRS Proprietary transmission protocol.

    • Year Round Filing – Returns filed through MeF can be submitted year round.

    • Balance due returns can be filed and, at the same time, authorize an electronic funds withdrawal from your bank account. Payments are subject to limitations of the Federal Tax Deposit rules.

    • Binary attachments -- The MeF program allows forms not already developed in XML to be attached to the electronic submission to accommodate late legislation and other unscheduled form changes. Forms can be submitted in Portable Document Format (PDF). Examples of binary attachments are birth certificates, police reports, photos, notarized and insurance statements, etc…

    • Future implementation of superseded and amended returns.

3.42.5.16.4  (11-12-2014)
MeF Processing System Components

  1. The MeF system is deployed on the Security and Technology Infrastructure Release (STIR). STIR provides a set of common services for use by the MeF application. These services include:

    • Application Messaging and Data Access Services (AMDAS)

    • Enterprise Directory and Authentication Services (EDAS) and

    • Security Audit and Analysis System (SAAS).

  2. The AMDAS and EDAS systems are common services, which provide:

    • Personalization, authentication, authorization, and message screening services

    • Capability to connect mid-tier applications to the mainframe by making a simple function call.

  3. The Security Audit and Analysis System (SAAS) system provides IRS Cyber Security and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) with a system that collects, stores, and reports on audit trail records.

  4. The MeF system architecture allows for a single application server, or it is scalable to multiple servers to handle future growth without impact to the architecture. To minimize changes in the future, the MeF system relies on industry standards such as the XML schema. The XML schema and the packaging designs are flexible enough to handle both text and non-ASCII data.

  5. The MeF System consists of the following 5 Subsystems:

    • Transmission File and Return Processing Subsystem– Processes transmission files and returns, which includes transmission file retrieval and validation, return validation, generation of code and edit data, and generation of acknowledgment files. See below for more information.

    • Return Request and Display Subsystem- Displays tax return data to authorized IRS personnel through the EUP.

    • Database and System Utilities Subsystem- Updates the MeF database with information from the source IRS database systems.

    • Reporting Subsystem- Generates management reports for viewing and printing. Reports can be generated in real time by authorized personnel or in a batch mode. Reports can only be viewed and printed by authorized personnel through the Employee User Portal (EUP).

    • Interface Processing Subsystem- Translates and sends data from the e-file system to the targeted IRS systems.

  6. The Transmission File and Return Processing Subsystem consists of the following business components:

    • Transmission Processing- Validates transmission files and saves transmission file content and any errors detected during validation.

    • Acknowledgment Generation- Retrieves transmission and return validation results, assembles the results into acknowledgment files, and writes the files to e-File shared storage.

    • Return Validation- Validates returns, which includes both XML schema validation and business rule validation.

    • Code and Edit- Generates code and edit data for each accepted return.

    • Modernized Tax Return Database (M-TRDB) Store- holds tax returns and associated data in the M-TRDB system.

    • Internet Filing Application (IFA)- Transmission channel through the Integrated Enterprise Portal (IEP) used by Large Taxpayers and Transmitters to submit MeF returns.

    • Application to Application (A2A)- Transmission channel used by transmitters that build and register their systems to transmit directly to MeF.

3.42.5.16.5  (11-12-2014)
Return Request and Display Application (RRD)

  1. The RRD application displays specific tax return and status information for tax returns processed by the Modernized e-File (MeF) application. Access to RRD is through the Employee User Portal (EUP).

  2. Access to RRD is based on portal-defined permissions by requesting the OL-5081 user role MEFHLP_PR.

    User Role 5081 Role Data for Accepted Returns Data for Rejected Returns
    Help Desk MEFHLP_PR –(e-help desk employees who assist third-party submitters to understand the results of MeF processing) All data, which includes:
    • Tax returns

    • Code and Edit Sheet Value data

    • M-TRDB change history (corrections to tax return data made by ERS and other sources), if any available

    • M-TRDB processing status information

    • Binary attachments, if any available

    • Acknowledgements for accepted tax returns

    • Subsidiary Returns

    • Index of return content

    • Transmitted tax returns

    • Binary attachments, if any available

    • Acknowledgements

    • Subsidiary Returns

    • Index of return content

  3. MeF Roles allow ability to view 100 percent of the tax return data including forms and schedules as they appear on paper and the ability to view all attachments, including binary attachments.

    Note:

    The most current RRD User Guide is posted on SERP web site under the Electronic Products and Services Support (EPSS) Research Portal.

  4. RRD, as well as, all other EUP applications have the following password and account expiration settings:

    • Account inactivity expiration setting: 720 days

    • Password expiration setting: 180 days

    • Regarding purges: There is currently no purge requirement and/or process for EUP accounts when expired, however, the accounts will be marked disabled with a reason of account or password expiration.

3.42.5.16.6  (11-12-2014)
Forms for 1040 Modernized e-File (MeF)

  1. Returns filed through MeF can be submitted year round.

  2. Fiscal year returns cannot be filed through MeF.

  3. MeF will allow filing of prior year 1040 returns (exception: Form 4868 extensions must be filed on or before April 15th of the current filing season). The MeF platform will accept returns for the current tax year and two prior tax years. For example:

    • In January 2014, 1040 MeF will accept Tax Years 2011, 2012, and 2013.

    • In January 2015, 1040 MeF will accept Tax Years 2012, 2013, and 2014.

    • In January 2016, 1040 MeF will accept Tax Years 2013, 2014, and 2015.

  4. The prior year’s software is required to file a prior year return. Only the forms accepted for a particular tax year are accepted. For example: MeF (Form 1040 series) returns were accepted in 2011, but only limited forms and schedules were accepted. With the 2011 software, a 2011 Form 1040 can be filed. For that year the Schedule F was not an accepted form. So, a Schedule F could not be e-filed through MeF with a 2011 tax return.

  5. For the current year, the Form 4868, Form 1040, and most common Form 1040 related forms and schedules can be filed through the MeF platform: Tax Year 2014 Accepted Forms and Schedules.

3.42.5.16.7  (11-12-2014)
Perfection Periods for Rejected Returns

  1. The transmission perfection period for Form 1040 family returns is 5 calendar days.

  2. For timely filed Tax Year 2014 Form 1040 family returns:

    • April 20, 2015 is the last day for retransmitting rejected timely filed Form 1040 family returns.

    • June 20, 2015 is the last day for retransmitting rejected timely filed Form 1040 family returns and/or Form 4868 extensions to meet overseas exception and Form 2350.

    • October 20, 2015 is the last day for retransmitting rejected timely filed Form 1040 family returns on extension from Form 4868.

  3. If an e-filed return cannot be perfected and retransmitted due to rejection, the taxpayer must file a paper return. For that return to be considered timely, the paper return must be filed by the later of:

    • the due date of the return

    • ten calendar days after the date the IRS gives notification that it has rejected the electronic portion of the return

  4. Taxpayers should include an explanation in the paper return as to why they are filing the return after the due date. Refer to Publication 1345 for guidance.

3.42.5.17  (11-12-2014)
Integrated Enterprise Portal (IEP)

  1. The Integrated Enterprise Portal (IEP) is the IRS Internet portal that allows registered individuals to access selected tax data and other sensitive applications. Registration and login authentication are required for registered individuals. Self-authentication with shared secrets is required when first registering. User interactions are encrypted from the user’s workstation or system to the portal. The IEP also supports the exchange of bulk files of information with the IRS. The IEP communicates with backend application systems (modernization ). Two identical IEP infrastructures are located in Sterling, VA and Chicago, IL.

  2. The IEP provides a "fast and free" filing option for filers that use the MeF System to transmit returns via the Internet. The IEP also provides the following:

    • Security Services that take care of user authentication and authorization

    • Tax Return and Document Submission Services that include Electronic Filer Identification Number (EFIN), Electronic Tax Identification Number (ETIN) verification, file uncompress, site indicator, timestamp and virus detection.

  3. For instructions on how to become an IRS e-file participant and to learn the guidelines for using the Integrated Enterprise Portal (IEP), review the following:

    • IRM 3.42.10, Authorized IRS e-file Providers,

    • IRM 3.42.8, e-services Procedures for Electronic Products and Services Support (EPSS)and

    • Publication 3112, IRS e-file Application and Participation.

3.42.5.17.1  (10-01-2013)
Security During Transmissions

  1. Transmitters use the internet to transmit electronic return data to the MeF system. The design of the Internet Filing Application (IFA) and Application to Application (A2A) features Web Services-Interoperability (WS-I) security standards as discussed in more detail below.

  2. The IRS IT Cyber Security organization ensures all IRS systems used to receive, process and store tax return data are secure. Any and all access to tax return data is protected, fully controlled, monitored, verified, and logged for analysis of potential abusive or malicious purposes.

  3. OMB Circular A-130 and the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) (Title III of the E-Government Act (P.L.107-347)) require major applications such as MeF to undergo a Certification and Accreditation (C&A) Process.

    • Certification is a formal review and test of the security safeguards implemented to determine whether the system provides adequate security that is commensurate with the risk of operating the system on the IRS information technology infrastructure.

    • Accreditation is the formal authorization by the Executive Level Business Owner responsible for the operation of the MeF system and the explicit security.

  4. Specific guidance is provided by various National Institute of Standards (NIST) and other special publications (the "800" series). The process must include formal review and testing of the design and implementation of the system's security controls. The IRS IT Cyber Security organization and the business system owner are jointly responsible and actively involved in completing the IRS C&A Process for MeF.

  5. IFA and A2A are hosted within the IRS Modernized System Infrastructure and are accessed through the Integrated Enterprise Portal (IEP). Transmitters using IFA are required to use their e-Services user name and password in order to log into the IEP. They also select their Electronic Transmitter Identification Number (ETIN) prior to transmitting returns. Once the transmitter successfully logs into the IEP, the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) Handshake Protocol allows the IEP and transmitter to authenticate each other and to negotiate an encryption algorithm and cryptographic keys before the first byte of return data is transmitted. This connection is private. The transmitter’s Browser and the IEP negotiate a secret encryption key for encrypted communication between the transmitter and the MeF system. This secret key is shared only between the transmitter and the IEP and is not known to any individual. The transmission is part of a secure communications protocol HTTPS/SSL. The strength of the encryption key used determines the degree of difficulty for anyone to decode the key and thereby decode the return data. IRS uses SSL 3.0 128-bit encryption for access to the IEP. The secure SSL tunnel also protects the return data from being intercepted while in transit.

3.42.5.17.2  (10-01-2010)
Prepare and Originate MeF Returns

  1. After the preparation of a tax return is complete and signed by the appropriate person, tax preparation software, which has been approved by IRS for electronic filing, will provide the necessary instructions to "originate" the electronic submission of the return and authorize the filing of the return via IRS e-file. During this process the electronic return data is converted into the format defined by IRS for electronic filing.

3.42.5.17.3  (10-01-2010)
Transmission to IRS

  1. IRS Authorized e-file Providers may choose to transmit directly to IRS or use a third party transmitter. Transmitters use the internet to transmit electronic return data to the IRS Modernized e-File (MeF) system. IRS included two new internet options in the design of MeF. Internet Filing Application (IFA) and Application to Application (A2A) were designed to meet the needs of registered transmitters who send large complex returns. The design of the IFA and A2A features Web Services-Interoperability (WS-I) security standards as discussed in more detail below.

3.42.5.17.4  (11-12-2014)
MeF Processing

  1. A critical part of the MeF design was the IRS decision to use an XML format for electronic return data. The XML format ensures the electronic return data transmitted to IRS meets all required specifications and allows MeF Systems to process and view the electronic return data. The following is a brief explanation of how electronic data received by IRS is converted to a tax return.

    1. Each line or data element on every IRS form is given an XML name tag.

    2. Every instance of supporting data is defined and given an XML name tag.

    3. IRS and/or contractors use the name tags to create XML schemas.

    4. IRS develops a set of Business Rules to validate the return after the return passes the XML validation.

    5. IRS provides the XML schemas and Business Rules to software vendors.

    6. Software vendors use the XML schemas and Business Rules to create the electronic portion of their tax preparation software.

    7. Software vendors are required to test their tax preparation software with IRS and MeF Systems to ensure it can correctly format and transmit electronic data to IRS.

    8. After return preparation is complete, the return is originated and the return data is output into the specified XML format for electronic filing.

    9. IRS validates the transmitted files against the XML schemas and Business Rules in the MeF production systems.

    10. Returns that successfully pass validation are considered "Accepted" and forwarded for additional processing to the IRS systems used to process paper returns.

    11. 100 percent of the electronic return data is also stored in an official IRS repository and may be viewed by authorized IRS employees using XML stylesheets.

    12. IRS provides copies of the XML stylesheets on irs.gov where they may be incorporated into software vendor or corporation programs for viewing the return.

3.42.5.18  (10-01-2013)
Electronic Communication Between IRS and Transmitters During The e-file Process

  1. IRS issues several notifications to the transmitter during the various stages of Modernized e-File (MeF) processing. If a taxpayer uses a third party transmitter to send their electronic return to IRS, they should check with their transmitter for specific information.

  2. When the transmission to IRS is successful, the IRS immediately notifies the transmitter that the transmission was received and the return is ready to begin processing.

  3. Once the transmission file is received, the MeF system validates the transmission file and creates an acknowledgement file within 24 hours. If the electronic return passed MeF validation, the acknowledgment file is generated. If the electronic return failed MeF validation, the acknowledgement file contains:

    • Error Category - Errors are grouped into a small number of categories

    • Error Message - Rule text or XML validator message

    • Rule Number - Each rule is identified by a unique rule number

    • Severity - "Reject And Stop" or "Reject" or "Alert" (An alert does not cause the return to reject. Information is being provided in the alert to the taxpayer about a condition in that return; however, the return does not reject because of that condition.) and

    • Data value - Data value causing the violation - when appropriate.

3.42.5.18.1  (10-01-2010)
How MeF Systems are Approved for Electronic Filing

  1. The Modernized e-File (MeF) programs go through several stages of review and testing before they are used to process live returns. When new requirements and functionality are added to the Assurance Testing System and the Production System, testing is performed by IRS' Software Developers and by IRS' independent testing organization. These important activities ensure that the electronic return data can be received and accurately processed by MeF Systems. Every time an IRS tax form is changed and affects the XML schema, the entire development and testing processes are repeated.

3.42.5.18.2  (11-12-2014)
Modernized Tax Return Database (M-TRDB)

  1. The Modernized Tax Return Database (M-TRDB) will only receive information on all MeF returns that are accepted for processing. Rejected MeF returns will be stored for one year on the MeF System.

  2. M-TRDB will store the following:

    • Accepted Returns

    • Tax Return Document Locator Number (DLN)

    • Filer Information (Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN), Name Control and Type Code)

    • Code and Edit Data

    • Data Perfection Corrections to the Return (Change History)

    • Generalized Mainline Framework (GMF) Data

    • Processing Status and

    • Binary attachments.

  3. MeF returns and all attachments including binary attachments are displayed via the web browser. The entire tax return has the appearance of a paper return. Additionally, the tax return is displayed with a Test/Production or Accepted/Rejected watermark.

  4. MeF IMF Accepted Returns will be stored in M-TRDB 7 years and Rejects will be stored in MeF for 1 year.

  5. M-TRDB is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (24X7) with minimal scheduled or unscheduled down time. M-TRDB provides extract capability of tax return data for certain organizations.

  6. Users are able to request a print of the MeF tax return using the web browser (through the EUP). From the print option, the user is presented with a list of items that can be printed, such as:

    • Entire tax return

    • Binary attachments

    • Individual forms

    • Acknowledgments, etc. and

    • Schedules.

  7. MeF returns show the caption e-File GRAPHIC print-DO NOT PROCESS on the printed accepted tax return.

3.42.5.18.3  (11-12-2014)
Other Applicable IRMs, User Guides, and Reference Documents

  1. Listed below are other applicable IRMs, user guides and reference documents associated with MeF

    • IRM 21, Customer Account Services

    • IRM 3.42.4, IRS e-file for Business Income Tax Returns

    • IRM 3.42.7, e-help Desk

    • IRM 3.42.8, e-Services Procedures for Electronic Products and Services Support (EPSS)

    • IRM 3.42.10, Authorized IRS e-file Providers

    • RRD User Guide

    • RRD Training Course 29749 (ELMS course)

    • Publication 1345, Handbook for Authorized IRS e-file Providers of Individual Income Tax Returns

    • Publication 3112, IRS e-file Application and Participation

    • Publication 4163, Modernized e-File (MeF) Information for Authorized IRS e-file Providers and Large Taxpayers (Corporations, Partnerships and Tax-Exempt Organizations

    • Publication 4164, Modernized e-File (MeF) Guide for Software Developers and Transmitters

3.42.5.18.4  (11-12-2014)
Submission Processing Campus - Live Processing Individual MeF Returns

  1. This section will provide a general overview of the means for receiving and verifying the filing of electronically filed returns at each of the campuses and the applicable procedures necessary to resolve processing problems encountered. The e-help Manager, as applicable, must ensure these procedures are performed by the receiving e-help Desk site.

  2. Once the application is received and testing is completed, participants are ready to file "live" electronic returns.

  3. The instructions for live processing are identical to those used for assurance testing along with those described below and in the following sections.

  4. E-help Desk assistors must:

    • Open an Interaction and notate required remarks in the interaction on e-help Support System (EHSS).

    • Request the 1040 MeF Return using the RRD Help Desk Application. (Search by EIN, EFIN, ETIN, Submission ID, DLN or SSN.)

    • Review the Business Rules error displayed on the Acknowledgement or return.

    • Explain the reason the return rejected to the caller. For further explanation of a Business Rule, review Knowledge Base Solution ID on EHSS.

    • Document all comments and contacts in the EHSS Interaction.

    • Monitor the Applicant’s Interaction on EHSS until issue is resolved, if applicable.

    • Close Interaction or, if unable to resolve the issue, assign and refer the Interaction to the Lead Tax Examiner. If the Lead cannot resolve, escalate the Interaction to the 1040 MeF Analyst provider group. See IRM 3.42.7, e-help Desk, for the appropriate procedures to refer Interactions.

  5. When researching MeF Returns, the e-help Desk will access MeF data through assigned EUP roles. Several updates have been made to the request screen for IMF returns to be researched on MeF RRD (Review, Request and Display). Via the MeF RRD Help Desk, e-help Desk assistors can:

    • view acknowledgements (Rejected and Accepted)

    • view an index of what is attached to the return

    • view the return

    • print the acknowledgements and returns and

    • generate and view reports (if manager approves via OL-5081).

    Note:

    For additional information, refer to the RRD User Guide.

3.42.5.18.5  (10-01-2013)
Working NAP Rejects for MeF Returns

  1. MeF designed a screen on RRD that will look like and have the same information that was found on the ELF1544. At the bottom of the "IRS Submission Details" screen there will be a tab named "View NAP Request/ Response" . Once selected it will show the data needed to work a NAP reject.

3.42.5.18.6  (11-12-2014)
MeF Assurance Testing System (ATS) and Communications Testing

  1. This section provides information for completing the MeF Assurance Testing System (ATS) process. For all MeF Forms, refer to Publication 4164, Modernized e-file Guide for Software Developers and Transmitters. 1040 MeF testing information can be found in Publication 1436, Test Package for Electronic Filers of Individual Income Tax Returns. Publication 1436 will include MeF (ATS) information.

  2. All Software Developers are required to perform MeF System testing. 1040 MeF Assurance Testing System (ATS) begins November 3, 2014 for Tax Year 2014.

  3. Participants should notify the e-help Operation at 1(866) 255-0654 when they are ready to test. If the site receiving the call is not the testing site then an Interaction must be opened and transferred to the correct site.

  4. Prior to testing, all Software Developers and Transmitters must receive through the application process the following:

    • Electronic Transmitter Identification Number (ETIN)

    • Electronic Filer Identification Number (EFIN) and

    • Password (The password is an eight digit alpha numeric password that is used for testing and production.)

  5. The Transmitter must complete an error-free Communication Test by transmitting one accepted return. The e-help Desk assistor will:

    • Verify the return was accepted

    • Verify the software contains a valid and current Software Identification Number and

    • Move the appropriate forms or ETIN to production status.

  6. Communications Testing with approved software begins any time after November 3, 2014:

    • If the transmitter will be sending submissions through IFA, the transmitter must perform the communications test through IFA.

    • If the transmitter will be sending submissions through A2A, the transmitter must perform the communications test through A2A.

    • If the transmitter will be sending submissions through both portals, the transmitter must perform the communications test through IFA and A2A.

  7. A Software Developer who will not transmit need not perform a communications test.

  8. Software Developers will be assigned a test ETIN to be used for software testing. This test ETIN remains in test status and is not moved to production status, which enables the Software Developer to test year round.

  9. ETIN for transmitters will be set to "Test" until they have passed the communications test. At that time, the ETIN will be moved from "Test" status to "Production" status. The transmitter may request, a Test ETIN to be used for testing once their Production ETIN moves from "Test" to "Production" .

  10. 1040 MeF testing will include 5 Form 1040 test scenarios and one of each Form 1040A, Form 4868, Form 1040EZ, Form 1040SS-PR, Form 9465, Form 2350 and Form 56 scenarios. Publication 1436 scenarios will have enough information for the software developers to complete the return but will not include all of the computation totals. The 1040 MeF Team will provide separate Answer Keys to Electronic Products and Services Support (EPSS). The Answer Keys will provide the test scenarios with all the entries completed.

  11. Software Developers do not have to support all forms or schedules, nor are they required to support binary attachments (PDF is optional). The forms not supported are listed on the Questionnaire completed by the Software Developer at the beginning of testing. The Software Developer must complete the Questionnaire and return it to the e-help assistor before a Software Identification Number (SIN) can be assigned to the testing package.

  12. All electronically filed returns are required to have a Software Identification Number (SIN) transmitted as part of the return. If the number is not provided, the return will reject with MeF Business Rule R0000-904-03. The Software Identification Number is designed to identify software products used when transmitting returns to the IRS. It is not used to track the serial numbers of individual software packages.

    Note:

    Individuals or firms who purchase another Developer's current year approved software for the purpose of using and/or marketing it under their own name, must complete and submit an application requesting a separate Software Identification Number (SIN).

  13. The Software ID number assigned to tax preparation packages will be an eight digit number given during testing. The Software ID number is generated in the Third Party Data Store (TPDS) by e-help Desk. The format of the number is "YYNNNNNN." The "YY" is the two digit tax year for which the product is being developed. For example, during testing of software to be used for processing year 2015, the two digit year will be "14" for Tax Year 2014.

  14. Each software package receives its own ID number. For example, if a software company has a Windows tax package, a Macintosh tax package, a Disk Operating System (DOS) Tax package, and a Web tax package, that company will need four distinct software package ID numbers. This will allow the tracking of how errors on different packages are handled from the same company. Once the software packages have passed, the assigned team will update TPDS and the designated person at each campus will e-mail the acceptance sheets to the other sites, E-Submissions and Electronic Products & Services Support (EPSS) Headquarters.

  15. The information will be sent in an EXCEL file which contains the following columns:

    1. Software ID Number (different ID for each package)

    2. Software Vendor

    3. Package Name

  16. The e-help Acceptance Testing Spreadsheet should include the following information:

    • Company Name

    • Software Package name

    • Software Package ID Number (SIN)

    • Testing passed date

    • Online or Practitioner

  17. Assign a Software Package ID Number to ALL software packages using TPDS.

3.42.5.18.7  (10-01-2010)
Receipt of the Initial e-file Test Transmission for 1040 MeF

  1. The e-help Manager will complete the following actions, upon receipt of the initial MeF test transmission from the applicant:

    1. Assign an e-help Desk assistor to handle and resolve all problems, throughout the testing, until the applicant is accepted. This can be done by state, district, ETIN, etc.

    2. Assign a Back-up e-help Desk assistor in case the primary is not available, to ensure continuity in communicating with the applicant.

    3. Maintain a list of the e-help Desk assistor's assignments for easy reference.

    4. Contact the applicant and advise of the name and telephone number for the assigned e-help Desk assistor and Back-up assistor.

    5. Assure the applicant of available assistance at any time for any problems they may have.

    6. Advise participants of the following rule: Rejected Form 1040 returns or Form 4868 extensions can be corrected within 5 days and be given the received date of the original reject date. This applies to live returns in Production, not test returns.

    Note:

    MeF returns are worked through the EUP system electronically using the Help Desk Application in RRD. Accepted returns over one year old will be found using the "RRD Application" in RRD

    .

3.42.5.18.8  (11-12-2014)
Communicating and Correcting e-file and MeF Problems

  1. This section provides guidelines for the e-help Desk assistors regarding communicating and correcting problems in processing of e-file applications, testing requirements and returns for Software Testing.

  2. Use e-help Support System (EHSS) to provide support to IRS external customers.

  3. To gain access to EHSS, you must complete and submit an On-Line 5081 Application for approval.

  4. Review IRM 3.42.5,IRS e-file of Individual Income Tax Returns, for complete guidelines.

  5. E-help Desk assistors assigned to handle the processing of the electronic Test transmissions should complete the following actions:

    1. Call the applicant and give your name and phone number.

    2. Let applicants know that you will be their contact at the e-help Desk site.

    3. Ensure the applicant understands that you are there to help with any problem they have and that they can call you any time.

    4. Explain that if you are not there, they may leave you a message or they may call the backup person who has also been assigned.

    5. Provide the applicant with a questionnaire to document any software limitations.

  6. E-help Desk assistors' time spent to help the tester varies as follows:

    1. Time needed to help applicants will be different based on what is required by the applicant.

    2. Experienced applicants may need very little help.

    3. Less experienced or new applicants may want you to go over every error step-by-step.

  7. E-help Desk assistors should try to coach participants to correct their own errors as much as possible.

  8. E-help Desk assistors should complete the following actions.

    1. Call the contact person listed on the application for clarification of all worklist items.

    2. Generate a status letter to advise the applicant of the issues that need to be resolved. If two telephone calls have been unsuccessful, make one in the morning and one in the afternoon.

    3. Request the applicant to provide the information needed to complete the application. Worklist items remain on the system as assigned to the employee until completed.

  9. E-help Desk assistors should adhere to the following:

    1. List all worklist items on the data base if the application is incomplete.

    2. Work all worklist items until completed. If the applicant does not provide the missing or corrected information for the application, he or she cannot participate in the Electronic Filing Program.

    3. Enter or update the information from the application which will be stored in the TPDS, if the application is complete.

    4. Ensure all worklist items are closed on the system, when finished.

  10. E-help Desk assistors should complete the following actions once the signed and completed application is received:

    1. Maintain a record of all the phone calls to each applicant via the EHSS Interaction. Any time you are unable to obtain the needed information to return a call timely, inform the applicant of the status and reason for delay.

    2. Keep a record any time an applicant indicates there has been a change to the information we have previously recorded. Ensure the database has been updated via the Interaction on EHSS.

    3. Ensure the completed Questionnaire listing the Software ID is maintained within the EHSS case.

    4. Approved testing must include the EHSS template "Acceptance" letter template informing the SWD that they have successfully completed software testing.

  11. The Lead Tax Examiner will review the records to determine recurring problems.

3.42.5.18.9  (10-01-2010)
e-file Approval for Software Developers

  1. Approval for a Software Developer as an electronic filer:

    • Establishes only that the electronic test transmissions are formatted properly and may be processed by the Service

    • Is not an endorsement of the software by the Service or the quality of services provided by the Software Developer and

    • Does not entitle the Software Developer to electronically file electronic forms unless the Software Developer applies and is also accepted into the electronic filing programs as a Reporting Agent and or as a Transmitter.

3.42.5.18.10  (09-06-2012)
MeF Fed/State program

  1. The 1040 MeF Fed/State program allows for the filing of individual state returns through MeF. Federal and state returns are sent to the IRS as complete and separate submissions. No data will be transferred or copied from one submission to another. The state return can be sent linked (with the Federal Submission ID referenced in the State Submission Manifest) or unlinked (no Federal Submission ID referenced in the State Submission Manifest). Unlinked state returns may also be referred to as "Stand Alone" . Each individual state determines if it will accept only linked state returns or both linked and unlinked state returns.

  2. States must use Web Services application-to-application (A2A) communication between MeF and State systems.

  3. The IRS will perform certain validations as described below before the state submissions are made available to the State.

  4. For Fed/State returns which are defined as a federal submission and state linked submission(s) with the IRS Submission ID referenced in the state manifest. If the federal submission is rejected, then the state submission will also be denied and will not be sent on to the State. An acknowledgement with the reason for denial will be sent to the transmitter.

  5. If the federal submission is accepted, then IRS will validate the following on each linked state submission:

    • The State can be identified in the state manifest.

    • The State indicated in the state submission is a State that is participating in the 1040 MeF Fed/State Program.

    • The Electronic Filer Identification Number (EFIN) indicated in the state manifest is a valid EFIN.

    • At least one of either the Primary social security number (SSN) or Spouse SSN provided in the state submission manifest matches at least one of either the Primary SSN or Spouse SSN provided in the return header of the linked federal submission.

    • The tax year referenced in the state submission manifest matches the tax year of the linked federal submission.

    • The linked IRS submission ID is that of an accepted federal return.

    • The submission category provided in the state submission manifest matches the submission category of the linked federal return.

  6. If the state data does not pass the validations listed above, then the state return will be denied by the IRS and an acknowledgement with the reason for denial will be sent to the transmitter.

  7. If the state data passes the validations listed above, then MeF takes the following actions:

    • MeF checks the SSN and name control of the Primary Taxpayer (and Spouse if applicable) against the IRS SSN and name control database.

    • MeF associates the results of the SSN and name control check(s) with the state submission.

    • MeF stages the state submission for retrieval.

    • MeF provides a status of "Ready for Pick Up" .

  8. For State Stand-Alone returns which are defined as a state unlinked submission with no IRS Submission ID referenced in the state manifest, IRS will validate the following on each state submission:

    • The State can be identified in the state manifest

    • The State indicated in the state submission is a State that is participating in the 1040 MeF Fed/State Program

    • The State has authorized unlinked state submissions and

    • The EFIN indicated in the state manifest is a valid EFIN.

    • The tax year specified in the state submission manifest is valid for the current or prior year returns that are being accepted by MeF.

  9. If state data does not pass the validations listed above, then the state return will be denied by the IRS and an acknowledgement with the reason for denial will be sent to the transmitter.

  10. If state data passes validations listed above, then MeF takes the following actions:

    • MeF checks the SSN and name control of the Primary Taxpayer (and Spouse if applicable) against the IRS SSN and name control database

    • MeF associates the results of the SSN and name control check(s) with the state submission

    • MeF stages state submission for retrieval and

    • MeF provides a status of "Ready for Pick Up" .

  11. The IRS generated information that will be associated in the zip file of data for state submissions will include:

    • Electronic Transmitter Identification Number (ETIN) — the identifier of the transmitter that sent this submission to IRS

    • Received Timestamp - the date and time the submission was received by IRS

    • Electronic Postmark - the date and time the submission was received by the Transmitter

    • SSN Status - the results of the SSN and name control lookup for the Primary Taxpayer and Spouse (if applicable)

    • Imperfect Return Indicator (E) on linked state submissions - the taxpayer has requested that IRS accept the federal return even though the dependents’ SSN and name control and/or the Earned Income Qualifying Child SSN and name control did not match and

    • Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) Mismatch Indicator (M) on linked state submissions - the federal return contains a valid ITIN, and in the same return, a W-2 form contains a valid SSN.

  12. The IRS e-help Desk will provide information on the status of a state return (i.e., Received, Ready for Pick Up, Sent to State, Received by State, Acknowledgement Received from State, Acknowledgement Retrieved) but will not provide information on the acceptance or denial of state returns.

3.42.5.18.11  (11-12-2014)
Researching Modernized e-File IMF Identification Codes

  1. Each individual return type is assigned a Program Code. In addition to Program Codes, MeF IMF returns are also assigned a Master File Transaction (MFT) Code, a File Location Code (FLC), a Tax Class Code, and a Document (Doc) Code, as follows:

    • Program Code- a five digit number

    • Master File Transaction Code- a two digit number that identifies module to which a transaction is posted

    • File Location Code- first two digits in the Document Locator Number (DLN)

    • Tax Class Code- identifies type of return and

    • Document Code- fourth and fifth digits in the DLN.

  2. Returns filed electronically through MeF are distinguishable from paper returns by a unique Filing Location Code as shown as the first two digits of the DLN. The FLCs shown in the tables in Paragraphs 3, 7 and 8 below have been reserved for electronic filing and should never be used for numbering paper forms (with the exception of FLCs 20 and 21, which must be shared with International Paper Processing).

  3. MeF will share the same set of FLCs for electronic returns as shown in the table below.

    Site File Location Code to be Assigned by MeF System DLN Generation
    Andover Primary: 14 / Backup: 16
    Austin Primary: 76 / Backup: 75
    Kansas City Primary: 70 / Backup: 79
    Philadelphia Primary: 30 / Backup: 32
    Fresno Primary: 80 / Backup: 90
    Austin Foreign Address 20
    Austin U.S. Possession Address 21
  4. Electronically filed IMF returns will be assigned Input System Source Code "L" .

  5. Electronically filed IMF returns, MeF return blocks will be assigned an ABC Designation of "MeF" in the Block Header.

  6. The following codes are used to identify Form 1040 filed electronically through 1040 MeF that are applicable to Individual IRS e-file Programs:

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 1040 Domestic Address 43510 30 16/14/80/90/30/32/76/75/70/79 2 11/21
    Form 1040 Foreign Address 46510 30 20 2 05
    Form 1040 U.S. Possession Address 46510 30 21 2 05
  7. The following codes are used to identify Form 1040A filed electronically through 1040 MeF that are applicable to Individual IRS e-file Programs:

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 1040A Domestic Address 43520 30 16/14/80/90/30/32/76/75/70/79 2 09
    Form 1040A Foreign Address 46520 30 20 2 09
    Form 1040A U.S. Possession Address 46520 30 21 2 09
  8. The following codes are used to identify Form 1040EZ filed electronically through 1040 MeF that are applicable to Individual IRS e-file Programs:

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 1040EZ Domestic Address 43530 30 16/14/80/90/30/32/76/75/70/79 2 07
    Form 1040EZ Foreign Address 46530 30 20 2 07
    Form 1040EZ U.S. Possession Address 46530 30 21 2 07
  9. The following codes are used to identify Form 1040PR filed electronically through 1040 MeF that are applicable to Individual IRS e-file Programs:

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 1040PR Domestic Address 46540 30 21 2 27
  10. The following codes are used to identify Form 1040SS filed electronically through 1040 MeF that are applicable to Individual IRS e-file Programs:

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 1040SS Domestic Address 46540 30 21 2 26
  11. The following codes are used to identify Form 4868 filed electronically through Modernized e-File.

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 4868 Domestic Address 44720 30 16/14/80/90/30/32/76/75/70/79 2 17
    Form 4868 Foreign Address 44720 30 20 2 17
    Form 4868 U.S. Possession Address 44720 30 21 2 17
  12. The following codes are used to identify Form 9465 filed electronically through Modernized e-File.

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 9465 Domestic Address N/A - This form is not processed through GMF; it is routed to Entity N/A 16/14/80/90/30/32/76/75/70/79 2 00
    Form 9465 Foreign Address N/A - This form is not processed through GMF; it is routed to Entity N/A 20 2 00
    Form 9465 U.S. Possession Address N/A - This form is not processed through GMF; it is routed to Entity N/A 21 2 00
  13. The following codes are used to identify Form 2350 filed electronically through Modernized e-File.

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 2350 Domestic Address 44750 30 76/75 2 77
    Form 2350 Foreign Address 44750 30 20 2 77
    Form 2350 U.S. Possession Address 44750 30 21 2 77
  14. The following codes are used to identify Form 56 filed electronically through Modernized e-File.

    Programs Program Code MFT Code File Location Codes Tax Class Code Document Codes
    Form 56 Domestic Address N/A - This form is not processed through GMF; it is routed to Entity N/A 16/14/80/90/30/32/76/75/70/79 2 00
    Form 56 Foreign Address N/A - This form is not processed through GMF; it is routed to Entity N/A 20 2 00
    Form 56 U.S. Possession Address N/A - This form is not processed through GMF; it is routed to Entity N/A 21 2 00

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