Top Frequently Asked Questions for Electronic Filers

How do I request approval to file information returns electronically/magnetically?

Answer:

Filers of Form 1097-BTC, Form 1098 series, Form 1099 series, Form 3921, Form 3922, Form 5498 series, Form W-2G, Form 1042-S, Form 8027, or Form 8955-SSA:

  • You can use Form 4419, Application for Filing Information Returns Electronically (FIRE), to obtain approval to file information returns electronically.
  • In order to ensure timely filing, submit Form 4419 at least 45 days before the due date of the returns.
  • Fax or mail Form 4419. See the General Instructions for Form 4419 for the fax and mailing address information.
  • The IRS will provide a written reply to the applicant and further instructions at the time of approval.
  • You don't need to reapply for a Transmitter Control Code (TCC) each year. However, you must apply for a new TCC if you haven't used your TCC for 2 consecutive years.
  • If your files were previously transmitted by a service bureau using the service bureau's TCC and you now want to transmit your files yourself, you must apply for a TCC.
  • For further information about filing information returns electronically/magnetically, contact the Technical Services Operation (TSO) -- Customer Service Section at 866-455-7438 (toll-free) or 304-579-4827 (not toll-free) if using the Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD). Foreign filers may call 304-263-8700 (not toll-free).

Filers of Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, and 1095-C, see Affordable Care Act Information Returns (AIR) Program for information about filing these forms.

Filers of Form 8966, FATCA Report, see IDES Resources and Publication 5190, International Data Exchange Services User Guide, for more information.

I have a small business. Who is required to file Forms W-2 electronically?

Answer:

In an effort to make tax administration more efficient, the Service has created an electronic filing program for many information returns. Any person, including a corporation, partnership, employer, estate and/or trust who is required to file 250 or more information returns for any calendar year must file these returns electronically:

The 250-or-more requirement applies separately to each type of form.

For information on requesting a waiver from the electronic filing requirement, see:

  • Form 8508, Request for Waiver From Filing Information Returns Electronically (Forms W-2, W-2G, 1042-S, 1097-BTC, 1098 Series, 1099 Series, 3921, 3922, 5498 Series, and 8027, or ACA Forms 1095-B, 1095-C or an Authoritative Transmittal Form 1094-C (Refer to Instructions for Form 1094-C and 1095-C))
  • Form 8508-I, Request for Waiver From Filing Information Returns Electronically (For Form 8966), and
  • The Instructions for Form 8955-SSA

Frequently Asked Question Subcategories for Electronic Filers