We do a suitability check on any individual or firm applying to become an electronic return originator, transmitter, reporting agent, or intermediate service provider. This includes all principals and responsible officials on the e-file application. It takes us about 45 days to process the application and complete the suitability checks. We strongly encourage you to apply at least 45 days before you plan to begin e-filing. If you apply later, you may not be accepted in time to begin e-filing or using other services when you want. Suitability checks include an FBI criminal background check and a credit history. IRS also checks to make sure:
- all individual and business returns have been filed, and any balance paid or appropriately addressed;
- there has been no fraud; and
- there has been no prior non-compliance in IRS e-file programs.
All principals and responsible officials of your firm must pass the suitability check before your application will be accepted. If the firm or an individual fails, your application will be rejected. If your application is rejected, you will be notified in writing.
When we complete processing your IRS e-file application we will send you a letter with additional information about getting started, ID numbers and passwords. For more information, go to Publication 3112, IRS e-file Application and Participation (PDF).