Understanding Your CP01A Notice

This notice tells you about the Identity Protection Personal Identification Number (IP PIN) we sent you.

Each year, we issue CP01A notices that have a unique 6-digit IP PIN with instructions on how to use it. 

Notice CP01A recipients don't need to file a Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit (pdf), unless you as a recipient experience an identity theft incident after you received a notice CP01A.

What you need to do when filing Forms 1040 or 1040 PR/SS

You must enter your 6-digit IP PIN in the correct place on your federal tax return:

If you are filing a joint return using Form 1040 or 1040 PR/SS

  • Electronic returns
    • Every taxpayer who receives an IP PIN must enter it on the return; this includes the primary taxpayer, spouse, and dependent.
    • If only one taxpayer receives an IP PIN, enter it with that taxpayer’s Social Security number (SSN).
    • If both taxpayers receive an IP PIN, both taxpayers must enter the IP PIN with their SSNs.
    • If your dependent received an IP PIN before the filing season, you must include his or her IP PIN on your federal tax return.
  • Paper Returns
    • Only the first taxpayer listed on the tax return must enter his or her IP PIN

Important things to remember about your IP PIN

  • Do not reveal your IP PIN to anyone other than your tax preparer. Share it only when you are ready to sign and submit your federal income tax return.
  • You must use your IP PIN on your current or prior years Forms 1040 or 1040 PR/SS returns you may file in calendar year 2017 or
    • We will reject electronically filed returns.
    • The processing time may increase for paper returns, which would delay and refund you may be due.
  • Your IP PIN is valid only for federal income tax returns. If your state issues similar PINs, use only those PINs for state income tax returns. These PINs are different.
  • We will send you a new IP PIN each December/January by postal mail.
  • Store the CP01A letter securely with your tax records

If you misplace your IP PIN

Visit  Retrieve Your Identify Protection PIN (IP PIN)  for instructions on how to recover your original IP PIN or how to request a replacement.

Printable samples of this notice (PDF)

Need Help?

  • You can authorize someone to contact the IRS on your behalf.
  • See if you qualify for help from a Low Income Taxpayer Clinic.
  • If you can’t find what you need online, you can call the IRS at the 800, 866, or 888 number listed on the notice.