Guidance on Waivers for Partnerships Unable to Meet e-file Requirements


IRS publishes fact patterns describing situations in which waivers will generally be granted, or not granted, under IRS Announcement 2002-3, which provides waiver guidance for partnerships that cannot meet electronic filing requirements due to technology constraints; or where compliance with the requirements would result in undue financial burden.

  • Note: Publication 4163 and Publication 4164 provides updated information on exceptions to the mandate.

IRS may determine that a partnership has failed to file if it files a paper return instead of a required electronically filed return without first receiving a waiver.

Another potential consequence is that Forms 5471, Information Return of U.S. Persons With Respect to Certain Foreign Corporations, attached to the paper filed return may be considered filed late, which may subject the taxpayer to the late filing penalty of $10,000 per form under I.R.C. §6038(b).

Elements of a Waiver Request

To request a waiver, the taxpayer must file a written request containing the following information:

  1. A notation at the top of the request stating, in large letters, "Form 1065 e-File Waiver Request.”
  2. The taxpayer’s name, federal tax identification number, mailing address and a contact name and phone number.
  3. The type of tax return for which the waiver is requested.
  4. The taxable year for which the waiver is requested.
  5. A detailed statement which lists:
    • The steps the taxpayer has taken in an attempt to meet its requirement to timely file its return electronically,
    • Why the steps were unsuccessful,
    • The undue hardship that would result by complying with the electronic filing requirement, including any incremental costs to the taxpayer of complying with the electronic filing requirements. Incremental costs are those costs that are above and beyond the costs to file on paper. The incremental costs must be supported by a detailed computation. The detailed computation must include a schedule detailing the costs to file on paper and the costs to file electronically.
  6. A statement as to what steps the taxpayer will take to assure its ability to file future returns electronically.
  7. A statement (signed by an officer authorized to sign the return, as defined in section 6062 of the Code) with the following language:
    • Under penalties of perjury, I declare that the information contained in this waiver request is true, correct and complete to the best of my knowledge and belief.
  8. Requests from the taxpayer’s tax advisor/preparer must include a valid power of attorney.
  9. The Waiver Request should not be attached to the taxpayer’s paper tax return.
  10. Extension requests or payments should not be submitted with the Waiver Request.

Time for Filing a Waiver Request

Taxpayers are encouraged to file electronic filing Waiver Requests for failure to file a return electronically at least 45 days prior to the due date of the return, including extensions. This will give the Service time to process the Waiver Request.

Place for Filing a Waiver Request

Until the Service issues further guidance, taxpayers should file a Waiver Request with the Ogden Submission Processing Center.

Use the following address if using the U.S. Postal Service:

Internal Revenue Service
Ogden Submission Processing Center
Attn: Form 1065 e-file Waiver Request, Stop 1057
Ogden, UT 84201

Use the following address if using an overnight delivery service:

Internal Revenue Service
Ogden Submission Processing Center
Attn: Form 1065 e-file Waiver Request, Stop 1056
1973 N. Rulon White Blvd.
Ogden, UT 84404

Taxpayers may also fax the Waiver Request to the following number: 877-477-0575.

Situations in which e-file Waivers will generally be granted

  • Catastrophic Event
    A taxpayer who was subject to a catastrophic event and continues to incur undue hardship even after the period provided for under any specific IRS disaster or emergency relief procedures may request a waiver from the requirement to e-file. If approved, the taxpayer will be allowed to file a paper return.
  • Bankruptcy - Chapter 7
    The taxpayer, otherwise required to e-file, has filed a petition with the bankruptcy court under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Act.

Situations in which e-file Waivers will generally not be granted

  • Software Limitations
    The Service will generally not approve a request to waive the electronic filing requirement if the software purchased or licensed by a taxpayer or a return preparer does not include all of the features necessary to comply with the Modernized e-File requirements set forth in IRS regulations, revenue procedures, publications, and other instructions posted to the website.

Modernized e-File (MeF) for Partnerships