An Authorized IRS e-file Provider (Provider) is a business or organization authorized by the IRS to participate in IRS e-file. It may be a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation or other entity. The firm submits an e-file application, meets the eligibility criteria and must pass a suitability check before the IRS assigns an Electronic Filing Identification Number (EFIN). Applicants accepted for participation in IRS e-file are Authorized IRS e-file Providers.
A Provider may be an Electronic Return Originator (ERO), Intermediate Service Provider, Transmitter, Software Developer, Reporting Agent or ACA Provider. These roles are not mutually exclusive. For example, a Provider that is an ERO may also be a Transmitter. Providers may also be tax return preparers, but the activities and responsibilities for IRS e-file and return preparation are distinct and different from each other.