Filing Information Returns Electronically (FIRE)

What’s new?

Final regulations for the Taxpayer First Act, provision 2301, were issued February 21, 2023, by the Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service. Treasury Decision (TD) 9972 amends the rules for filing returns and other documents electronically (e-file). These regulations reduce the 250-return threshold to generally require electronic filing by filers of 10 or more returns in a calendar year beginning in 2024, tax year 2023. For tax year 2022, the number of returns remains at 250. Details on this regulation can be found here: IRS and Treasury final regulations on e-file.

To determine if you meet the 10 or more threshold to electronically file:

  • Identify how many information returns of any type covered by TD 9972, you need to file during a calendar year
  • If 10 or more, you MUST file electronically

Example: During the calendar year 2024, for tax year 2023, filing season, Company W, is required to file 4 Forms 1099-NEC, Nonemployee Compensation, and 4 Forms 1099-DIV, Dividends and Distributions, 2 Form W-2, Wage Statement, for a total of 10 returns. Because Company W is required to file 10 returns as calculated during the calendar year 2024, for tax year 2023, filing season, Company W must electronically file all its tax year 2023, Forms 1099-NEC and 1099-DIV with the IRS, and Forms W-2 with the Social Security Administration.

Refer to Treasury Decision (TD) 9972 for more information.

As part of the threshold reduction, corrected information returns MUST be filed electronically if the original return was submitted electronically. Corrected information returns are not counted when calculating the aggregate to determine if you are required to file electronically.

Example. After electronically filing 10 Forms 1099-DIV and 1099-INT, Company W files 2 corrected Forms 1099-DIV and 4 corrected Forms 1099-INT. Because Company W electronically filed its original tax year 2023, Forms 1099-DIV and 1099-INT, Company W must electronically file its corrected tax year 2023, Forms 1099-DIV and 1099-INT.

If you experience a hardship that prevents you from complying with the threshold reduction, you can submit a Form 8508, Application for a Waiver from Electronic Filing of Information Returns PDF. If you are new to electronic filing, you may want to consider using the new 1099 taxpayer portal that provides a no-cost option for electronic filing of the Form 1099 series returns.

  • The August 1, 2023, deadline to initiate your application to claim your Transmitter Control Code (TCC), obtained prior to September 26, 2021 (also known as a legacy TCC), has passed.

If you did not complete your application by the deadline:

  • You may use your existing TCC to transmit or retrieve your Filing Information Returns Electronically (FIRE) System file status information for tax years 2021 and 2022, until November 26, 2023. You may take screen shots of your file status information to retain for your records.
  • Beginning January 2024, you will no longer be able to electronically file using your legacy TCC. Exception: If you are a non-U.S. customer filing Form 1042-S, and could not complete your application by August 1, 2023, your Form 1042-S TCC will remain available for filing.
  • You have 90 days from the initial saved date to sign and complete an application that was saved by August 1, 2023. You must request all form types needed. If you delete a saved application to start over, you risk your ability to claim your existing TCC(s).
  • If you are a non-U.S. filer see What do you need to do to complete an IR application for TCC? to determine the requirements to complete an application.
  • If you are a large entity/government agency with several offices, departments, divisions, etc., it is recommended that you add at least one Responsible Official (RO) from each group to provide equal access to the application for updates and authorized user changes. An application can have as many ROs as needed.
  • If you determine your FIRE TCC information needs to be updated, complete your IR application sooner rather than later to ensure you can communicate with the IRS, or update your existing IR application for TCC.
  • You must provide the legal business name, employer identification number (EIN), and TCC to all users who e-file information returns or need to access the FIRE system to support your business. They will need this information to create their own FIRE Account that will be associated to your business.
  • New filers who need a TCC for the FIRE system must complete an IR application for TCC. Allow 45 days for processing. IRS also offers another e-filing option for information returns, Information Returns Intake System (IRIS). IRIS has two methods for filing, both require separate TCCs. The first IRIS e-filing method is the taxpayer portal that which allows issuers and transmitters of information returns to file free on-line directly with the IRS, without needing special software. The second IRIS e-filing method is Application to Application (A2A), special software is needed using Extensible Mark-up Language (XML) format. To use IRIS, you must complete an IRIS application for TCC. Refer to for more information.
  • Both FIRE and IRIS require their own TCC, they are not interchangeable.
  • Validate your identity using the latest IRS authentication process if you’ve not already done so. The IRS now offers a sign-in option with, an IRS technology provider. is an account created, maintained, and secured by a private technology provider.
  • Beginning June 2, 2023, the IRS will no longer support the use of existing IRS usernames to access e-Services. If you do not have an account, you must create a new account to access this service. For questions and assistance regarding, please visit Verifying for the Internal Revenue Service – help site.
  • The IR TCC application requires a Social Security number (SSN) or individual tax identification number (ITIN) for system access and individual authentication. The IRS is aware that foreign individuals who are acting on behalf of their foreign employer (e.g., Foreign Entities, Foreign Financial Institutions, Qualified Intermediaries, etc.) may not be able to obtain an ITIN or SSN to complete the IR TCC application and continues to explore other ways for taxpayers to authenticate their identities, including a government-sponsored option. While the solution is being developed, existing non-U.S. entities with an existing Form 1042-S TCCs will remain active and available. No additional actions are required at this time. 
  • During this transition period, the non-U.S. entities with an existing Form 1042-S TCC will not be able to update the established TCC information. This will not prohibit you from filing; however, you will need to continue accessing the FIRE system using the EIN, TCC, and legal business name as it currently appears on the FIRE system.
  • Log into the IR application for TCC.
  • You will be prompted to create a 5-digit PIN to sign the application if you haven’t already done so.
  • Complete the online application.

Note: Until the application is in ‘Completed’ status, you must select ‘Individual’ on the ‘Select Your Organization’ page.

FIRE production system availability

Status From Through
Down for annual updates  November 27, 2023, 3 p.m. Eastern time January 7, 2024
Available January 8, 2024  TBD

FIRE test system availability

Status From Through
Available November 1, 2023,
8 a.m. Eastern time
November 27, 2023, 3 p.m. Eastern time
Down for annual updates November 27, 2023,
3 p.m. Eastern time
January 3, 2024, 12 noon Eastern time
Available January 3, 2024


Note: The FIRE systems (production and test) have regularly scheduled maintenance windows every Sunday from 2 a.m. Eastern time to 8 a.m. Eastern time and Wednesday from 2 a.m. Eastern time to 5 a.m. Eastern time.

What is an information return?

Information returns are records other than tax returns that the IRS requires to document certain financial transactions.

The following forms may be filed electronically via the FIRE system.

The following forms are filed through the Affordable Care Act Information Return (AIR) system.

Log in to FIRE or create a new FIRE account:

Log in to FIRE

Apply for a Transmitter Control Code (TCC), which is required to access the FIRE system:

Access IR application for TCC

Before applying, please review Publication 5911, Information Returns (IR) Application for Transmitter Control Code (TCC) Tutorial PDF, which provides step-by-step instructions for applying for an IR Application TCC.

New FIRE users who do not already have a Secure Access username and password must authenticate their identities and create a new account to access the IR application for TCC.

Any entity that needs to file information returns can file electronically via the FIRE system. Any corporation, partnership, employer, estate or trust that files 250 or more information returns for any calendar year must file electronically. We encourage filers who have less than 250 information returns to file electronically as well. For information about coming change refer to Reduction in the electronic filing threshold beginning tax year 2023 (calendar year 2024).

Apply online for the TCC required to access the FIRE system. The TCC is a 5-character code that identifies the business submitting the electronic files. Apply through the information return application for TCC.

  • If the TCC was issued on or after September 26, 2021, contact the responsible official (RO) and ask them to provide you with the legal business name from the online IR-TCC application.
  • Ask the RO to confirm the legal business name contains only the following allowable special characters:
    • (period) .
    • (asperand) @
    • (hashtag) #
    • (hyphen) –
    • (comma) ,
    • (underscore) _
    • (forward slash) / 
    • (apostrophe) ‘

If there are other special characters present that are not in the above list, the RO must take action to remove them from the IR-TCC application before a FIRE account can be created.

  • Contact the RO who submitted Form 4419, Application for Transmitter Control Code to File Information Returns Electronically (FIRE), for the business before September 26, 2021, and ask for the exact legal business name that was used on the application.
  • Contact the Technical Services Operation help desk to obtain the exact legal business name as it appears in the FIRE system if you do not have an IR-TCC application. A responsible person for the business must be able to verify they are authorized to receive the information.

If your TCC was issued prior to September 26, 2021, and the steps above did not work, contact the RO and ask them to submit an IR-TCC application with the correct legal business name and current information. 

Prior to creating a FIRE account, the responsible official (RO) must:

  • Authenticate through
  • Complete the application to obtain a TCC

To transmit electronic files or check their status, the people listed on your IR application for TCC must create their own FIRE accounts. You can assign the following roles to them:

  • Responsible official (RO)
  • Contact

The main role of the contact is to transmit electronic files and monitor the file statuses on behalf of the businesses. To fulfill this role the RO must provide the contact with the following information so they can create their FIRE account.

  • TCC
  • EIN
  • Legal business name (exactly as entered on the IR application for TCC)

FIRE account information cannot be shared. Each contact must have their own account.

The RO listed on the application may create a FIRE Account but are not required to if they will not be transmitting the electronic returns for the business.
The FIRE account provides login credentials needed to submit files electronically, and includes the following:

User ID

  • Must be between 8 and 25 alpha numeric characters
  • Cannot contain special characters or spaces.

FIRE password

  • Must be between 8 and 20 characters
  • Must contain at least:
    • 1 uppercase letter
    • 1 lowercase letter
    • 1 number
    • 1 of the following special characters: # ? ! @ $ % ^ & * . , -
  • The User ID or Username cannot be part of the password

The FIRE system requires you to change your password every 90 days. The previous 24 passwords cannot be used.

The password must not be shared. It is the user’s responsibility to protect the password from becoming compromised.

The password cannot be changed more than 1 time in a 24-hour period.


  • Must contain 10 digits
  • The 10 digits cannot be:
    • All the same number, example 1111111111
    • Sequential in ascending or descending order, examples 0123456789 or 9876543210
    • Alpha characters

Established accounts that do not meet the criteria will be prompted to update their PIN when they log into the FIRE system.

If you enter an incorrect PIN three times, you will be locked out and unable to submit files for a 24-hour period.

Next, you will create a secret phrase that will make it possible for you to reset your own password.

Secret phrase

  • Must be between 8 and 20 characters
  • Must contain at least:
    • 1 uppercase letter
    • 1 lowercase letter
    • 1 number
    • 1 of the following special characters: # ? ! @ $ % ^ & . , ’ - .
  • Must not contain spaces
  • The user ID or username cannot be part of the secret phrase
  • Enter the CAPTCHA validation code

If all data entered is valid, you will receive the message, “Your Secret Phrase has been successfully created!”

If you have a FIRE system account (production or test) with an established secret phrase and forgot your password, you may reset your password by using your established secret phrase. The password cannot be changed more than 1 time in a 24-hour period.

  • Go to the FIRE system login screen
  • Select "Forgot Password"
  • Enter all the required information
  • Click "Login"
  • You will then be prompted to "Change Your Password" with the specified criteria.

Once logged into the FIRE system, you have the option to "Change Secret Phrase" if needed.

If you exceed the number of allowed log on attempts with the secret phrase, you will be prompted to call the IRS for a Secret Phrase reset.

The FIRE Production and Test System server no longer supports Secure Socket Layer (SSL) 3.0 as one of the FIRE system’s Internet Security Technical Standards. Transmitters using IE 6.0 or lower as their browser may have problems logging in and connecting to the FIRE system. Follow the steps below to connect and upload a file:

  • Go to Tools > Internet Options > Advanced
  • Scroll down and find Security
  • Uncheck both SSL 2.0 and SSL 3.0
  • Check TLS 1.2 and select “Apply”

If necessary, seek assistance from your internal IT department to make sure your browser is configured to the FIRE system Internet Security Technical Standards located in the Publications listed above.

Tip: It is recommended that you access the FIRE system via the FIRE production system or FIRE test system as URLs or sites may have changed.

Fill-in automatic extension of time requests

If you think you may not be able to file your information returns by the forms filing due date, you may request an automatic 30-day extension of time to file.

  • The FIRE system provides the option to request a 30-day extension of time using the Fill-in Form 8809. You will need to create a FIRE Account to use this option, but you don’t need a TCC.
  • Go to the Main Menu and select Extension of Time Request.
  • Select Fill-in Extension and enter the required information.
  • You will receive an instant approval of your original extension request if the application is completed and accepted.

This option cannot be used to request non-automatic extensions of time.

Non-automatic extension of time requests

If you need to request a 30-day non-automatic extension of time for Form W-2, Form 1099-NEC, or an additional 30-day extension for any other form type these requests must be submitted on paper Form 8809. Follow the form instructions and mail to the address provided.

Electronic Extension File Transmission

If you need to submit several extension of time requests, you may submit an extension file through the FIRE system. For this option you will need a FIRE Account and a TCC.

  • Select the appropriate publication listed under How to Transmit through the FIRE system.
  • Create a file in accordance with the publication’s extension record layout.

This option cannot be used to request non-automatic extensions for Forms W-2 or Forms 1099-NEC, or additional 30-day extensions. Refer to Form 8809 Instructions.

To submit the electronic file:

  • Log in to the FIRE system
  • Go to the Main Menu and select Extension of Time Request
  • Select Upload Extension File and follow the prompts

Extension files must be transmitted before the due date for the form the extension is being requested.

If you think you will not be able to meet your electronic filing requirement you may request a waiver. Waivers are not automatically accepted. If accepted they are only good for the current filing year. The waiver requests do not have an electronic filing option and must be submitted on paper Form 8508 PDF following the instructions provided on the form.

The Technical Services Operation (TSO) is available to payers, transmitters, and employers at the numbers listed below. When you call you will be provided guidance to essential elements pertaining to technical aspects for electronic filing through the FIRE systems, self-help resources, and referrals to tax law topics on Below are some examples of essential elements:

  • Form identification 
  • How to obtain a form
  • Provide related publications for a form or topic 
  • FIRE File status information and guidance

Contact Technical Services Operation (TSO)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. EST

  • 866-455-7438 Toll-free
  • 304-263-8700 International
  • The IRS welcomes calls via your choice of relay. Deaf or hard of hearing taxpayers using a relay service may call any of our toll-free numbers.

Assistance with individual taxpayer accounts, account related issues, or tax law cannot be provided on the numbers listed above. Click the Help link on for help with many tax issues.

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