1.17.8  Internal and Public Use Non-Tax Products (Cont. 1) 
Types of Published Products 
Envelopes  (11-19-2012)
Providing Taxpayers with Envelopes

  1. There are conditions where the IRS may benefit from providing taxpayers with envelopes for use in transacting official business. A courtesy reply envelope (E-25CR, Courtesy Reply Envelope) is available to serve this purpose.

  2. The IRS may furnish postage and fees paid business reply mail (BRM) envelopes in tax liability investigations only when the IRS requires information that the taxpayer does not legally have to provide. When information is solicited from a third party (not representing the taxpayer), or in administrative investigations requiring information from an employee reference, etc., the IRS may furnish a BRM envelope.

  3. Persons responding to correspondence relating to their tax liability, when they are legally bound to provide the required information, should not receive business reply mail envelopes.

  4. See Policy Statement 1-113, Postage-Paid Envelopes Furnished with Third Party Inquires in IRM, Policy Statement 1–113, for additional information.  (11-19-2012)
Envelope Responsibilities and Funding

  1. This section provides instructions and other information related to the IRS envelope program. Information is provided on envelope standards, ordering and procurement procedures and specifications review. For additional information related to the IRS envelope program, go to http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/envprog.html.


    Blank and/or non-standard envelopes are not ordered through the IRS envelope program. Consult an envelope program specialist for additional information.  (11-19-2012)
Publishing Responsibilities

  1. Publishing is responsible for planning and administering the envelope program for the IRS. These responsibilities include, but are not limited to, administering fixed-price printing contracts through the Government Publishing Office (GPO). Publishing will develop envelope specifications for these contracts. The contracts will serve as the procurement vehicle for the majority of IRS envelope needs.  (10-15-2015)
Customer Responsibilities

  1. Customers must review their envelope needs carefully prior to placing an order. The customer must confirm that funding is available before placing an envelope order. Customers must order envelopes from one of the following sources:

    • IRS Office Envelope Contract;

    • IRS Mail Processing Center Envelope Contract; or

    • PSR – Publishing Services Request submitted to Publishing for new, revised or specialty envelopes  (11-19-2012)
Envelope Funding

  1. Publishing, as shown in the table below, will fund the envelope requirements for M&P Distribution (Correspondence Production Services (CPS) sites), Submission Processing and Accounts Management Campuses, Computing Centers, and other high-volume mailing sites. These offices will assign a suitable person and backup person to serve as the envelope coordinator for that office. Publishing will process a PSR for each office at the beginning of the fiscal year, authorizing the person designated to request envelope purchases on behalf of that office. Publishing will set the funding aside in stewardship accounts from initial printing allocations.

  2. For low-volume envelope users, such as area and territory offices, the ordering office will fund, via the use of a government purchase card, requirements of envelopes listed below.

    Envelopes Funded and Procured by Publishing for High-Volume Users Envelopes Funded and Procured by Ordering Office for Low-Volume Users
    E-19, E-20, E-25BR E-19, E-20
    E-25CR, E-44, E-44B E-25BR, E-25CR
    E-47, E-73 E-44, E-44B
    E-119, E-125L, E-125R E-47, E-125L
    E-130, E-142, E-163 E-125R, E-130
    E-178, E-182W, E-199 E-142B, E-178
    E-200A, E-205, E-207 E-200A, E-207
    E-208, E-209, E-211  
    E-212, E-213  (10-15-2015)
Envelope Size Formats

  1. The three most common sizes for envelopes are:

    • 4-1/8 inches by 9-1/2 inches (letter size or tri-fold)

    • 6 inches by 9-1/2 inches (bi-fold)

    • 9 inches by 12 inches (flat)

  2. There can be other envelope sizes for specific purposes. Offices in the Washington, DC metropolitan area and in field locations can reference the IRS Office Envelope Contract price link at http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/efprce.html for additional information about selecting the appropriate envelope for a particular mailing situation. Additional mail and envelope reference information is also posted on the Postal & Transport Policy program site at http://publish.no.irs.gov/mailtran/MThome.html.

  3. As envelope size increases, so does the cost to purchase. Therefore, customers must always use the smallest envelope that satisfies the intended purpose.  (11-19-2012)
4-1/8 inch by 9-1/2 inch Envelopes

  1. The United States Postal Service (USPS) specifies the use of a 4-1/8" x 9-1/2" envelope for mailing one or more folded single sheets of letter size (8-1/2" x 11") paper. General-purpose envelopes, such as the E-125L and E-130, may be used for this type of mailing.

  2. When a return envelope must be included in letter-size mailings, you must use a 4-1/8" x 9-1/2" envelope as the mailer with an unfolded 3 7/8" x 8 7/8" or similar size envelope enclosed as the return envelope. General-purpose envelope E-130 may be used as a mailer in these instances, and E-25BR or E-25CR may be used as a return envelope as appropriate.  (10-15-2015)
6 inch by 9-1/2 inch Envelopes

  1. The use of 6" x 9-1/2" envelopes is warranted when multiple (usually more than eight) 8-1/2" x 11" sheets tri-folded are too thick to fit in a 4-1/8" x 9-1/2" envelope. The 6" x 9-1/2" envelope allows the sheets to be folded only in half to fit in the envelope (therefore referred to as bi-fold envelopes).  (10-15-2015)
9 inch by 12 inch Envelopes

  1. The use of 9" x 12" envelopes is warranted when multiple (usually more than 15) 8-1/2" x 11" sheets bi-folded are too thick to fit in a 6" x 9-1/2" envelope. The 9" x12" envelope allows the sheets to be inserted flat into the envelope (hence they are referred to as flats).

  2. The IRS, like other entities, must pay a postage surcharge on large, flats-sized envelopes. You should not use envelopes larger than 6-1/8” by 11-1/2” to mail anything that can be folded and mailed in a letter-sized envelope like the E-130, or a bi-fold envelope such as the E-200A.  (10-15-2015)
Envelope Standards

  1. IRS envelopes are developed and manufactured to conform to provisions of the USPS postal regulations.

  2. Maximum standardization is a primary objective of the IRS’ envelope program. The requestor must carefully consider the use of existing envelopes before a new or revised envelope is created.

  3. New forms, letters, and notices that will be mailed must be designed to be compatible with existing general-purpose envelopes. The address area should correspond to the window position of general-purpose window envelopes, such as E-125L or E-178. Use Document 7468, Print Alignment Template, to assist with the proper alignment of the various elements on correspondence.  (10-15-2015)
Use of Window Envelopes

  1. Publishing encourages the use of window envelopes, as it eliminates hand-writing, or printing and placing an address label on the face of the envelope. Mailing addresses printed from IRS systems, such as IDRS, are more accurate and not prone to transcription errors.

  2. Some IRS envelopes, such as the E-178, are designed with "double" or oversize windows. These larger windows allow for display of not only the mailing address on the correspondence, but also the return address printed above it as well.

  3. Single-window envelopes or non-window envelopes require that the return address be printed on the face of the envelope. If the return address changes, then these envelopes must be disposed of, which is a costly waste of printing funds.

  4. While we encourage using these window envelopes to display the return address, you must take great care to ensure that the return address is compliant with IRS addressing standards and USPS postal regulations for the proper format and content of the address. For more information, visit the Postal & Transport Policy program site at http://publish.no.irs.gov/mailtran/MThome.html.  (11-19-2012)
Envelope Printing

  1. IRS envelopes have specific typographical and printing requirements. These requirements affect envelope quality, security, price, and usability.  (11-19-2012)
USPS Requirements

  1. The USPS requires that address lines and other text on government envelopes be printed in dark colored ink. All IRS envelopes will be printed in black ink (except as required by the USPS for specialty envelopes).  (11-19-2012)
Bulk Supplies

  1. High-volume envelope users have identified contact persons to place envelope orders. These contacts have specification sheets for all envelopes. These sheets are the official envelope format and show printing locations along with address change line and routing information. The ordering offices must use the specification sheet as manuscript for placing print orders.  (11-19-2012)
IRS Areas and Territories

  1. The IRS Office Envelope Contract requires the contractor to set one or more address lines in Helvetica or Helvetica Bold typefaces as designated on the order. To ensure accurate printing, ordering offices must provide a properly completed Form 9880, FY 2015 Envelope Order. If Helvetica is not available, then Arial is an acceptable substitute.  (10-15-2015)
General Envelope Specifications

  1. All IRS envelopes are printed with a security tint on the inside. This tint is designed to prevent disclosure of information on the contents of the envelope. The requestor must refer any envelope stock without a security tint to the envelope program specialist for disposition instructions.  (10-15-2015)
Envelope Specification Sheet

  1. Specification sheets for existing envelopes are cataloged and available in the Core Repository of Published Products (CROPP). These specification sheets include the technical specifications and printing requirements for each IRS envelope. The envelope print contractor uses this information to custom-print IRS envelopes.

  2. Printing specifications for individual envelopes appear on its respective specification sheet. Go to Publishing’s product catalog information page at http://publish.no.irs.gov/cat3.cgi?itemtyp=&query=envelope+specification and enter the words "envelope" and "specification" in the title search to obtain a listing of current envelope specification sheets.  (11-19-2012)
Envelope Specifications Review

  1. Publishing will review specifications on an ongoing basis to obtain the most economical and efficient use of IRS envelopes by eliminating unnecessary envelopes and identifying envelopes not suited for their current use.

  2. The envelope program specialist will review envelope specifications with the objective of standardizing size, use, construction, and paper stock.

  3. Using information obtained from the specifications review, Publishing will prepare new or revised specifications for inclusion in IRS envelope contracts. Publishing will cancel obsolete envelopes, and will notify stakeholders affected by any changes.  (10-15-2015)
Envelope Contracts

  1. The IRS works in conjunction with the Government Publishing Office (GPO) to award term contracts to commercial envelope printing companies. These contracts provide exclusive use by all IRS ordering offices. Washington, DC metropolitan area and field offices use the low-volume contract. High-volume mailers, such as the Correspondence Production Services (CPS) sites and campuses, use the high-volume contract.

  2. When a new low-volume contract is awarded, Publishing posts the availability and contractor information on the envelope program website at http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/envprog.html. Publishing will make available revisions of Form 9880, FY 2015 Envelope Order, and Document 9589, FY 2015 Envelope Ordering Information, via download from the envelope contract website at http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/envfield.html.

  3. Form 9880 must be completed electronically, it cannot be handwritten. Document 9589 provides line-by-line instructions for completing the Form 9880. In lieu of using Form 9880 to order envelopes, there is a Web-based ordering system. Customers submit requests for order processing approvals via email. For additional information on the online envelope ordering system, go to http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/enveordr.html.

  4. Publishing provides information concerning use of the high-volume contract to envelope coordinators at each IRS campus, CPS site, and computing center office for their use. See the current list of IRS Center envelope coordinators at http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/ENVCOORD.html.  (10-15-2015)
Delinquent Deliveries

  1. Delinquent envelope deliveries cause serious problems, result in costly delays, and often require rescheduling of complex operations. Enforcing the contract delivery terms is one of the most important phases of envelope program administration. Take the following actions to ensure that the IRS receives all envelope orders on-time and in compliance with contract schedules.

    • Establish an order follow-up method to provide notice of a delinquent envelope order. Accomplish this by noting the scheduled delivery date for each envelope order on a calendar and checking daily to determine which orders are delinquent.

    • If the ordering person is not the recipient of the order, make sure the receiver gets a copy of the order so they know what they should be receiving. The receiver should sign and date the Form 9880, and return a copy of the form to the ordering person. Annotate any discrepancies between what was ordered and what was received on the Form 9880. If the online ordering system is used in lieu of the Form 9880, then convey the same information by email.

    • The ordering person must immediately notify the envelope program specialist of any delinquent envelope order. After appropriate information is obtained, the program specialist will determine the best course of action to resolve the discrepancy in the best interest of the IRS, while adhering to federal procurement regulations.  (11-19-2012)
Quality Control

  1. Monitoring the quality of envelopes received to ensure that the IRS is getting a quality product, manufactured according to the terms and specifications of the contract, is another important aspect of contract enforcement. The employee responsible for receiving the delivery should check each shipment for the following items:

    • Position of bar codes and sharpness of printing

    • Accuracy of printed addresses

    • Fonts, sizes, and spacing according to the envelope specification sheet

    • Ink color and consistency of coverage

    • Color and quality of paper stock

    • General construction of envelope

    • Durability and labeling of shipping containers

  2. Customers should handle poor quality envelopes or envelopes not meeting specifications as follows:

    • Notify the envelope program specialist immediately for problem resolution. Designated envelope coordinators must also complete a Form 6282, Envelope Trouble Report, and forward it to the envelope program specialist.

    • After appropriate information is obtained, the envelope program specialist will determine the best course of action to resolve the discrepancy, while adhering to federal procurement regulations. This may include negotiation by the GPO for a reduced price, if the envelopes are usable by the IRS.

    • If it is determined that an order should be rejected, the envelope program specialist will work with the GPO contracting officer to request correction of the defect(s) or replacement of the envelopes. Publishing must afford a reasonable amount of time to the contractor to complete the corrective action.  (11-19-2012)
Requisitioning New or Revised Envelopes

  1. When creating new or revised envelopes, you must consider several factors, including lead time, ordering cycles, quality control, and other factors. The requisitioning procedures are in the sections that follow.  (11-19-2012)
Headquarters Offices

  1. Headquarters offices requesting a new envelope, or desiring to revise an existing envelope, must submit a completed PSR, http://caps-as.enterprise.irs.gov/psr/app. The following must accompany the PSR:

    • Proposed envelope specifications

    • Estimated annual requirements

    • Recommended distribution patterns

    • Description or samples of material to be mailed

    • A copy of the processing procedure

    • Information regarding automatic envelope handling equipment to be used  (11-19-2012)
Field Offices

  1. Field offices, such as areas or territories, requiring a new or revised envelope should submit a request by memorandum to their Headquarters counterpart.

  2. If the Headquarters counterpart concurs with this request, then they will requisition the new or revised envelope. Publishing will determine the services required to produce the envelope.  (11-19-2012)
Lead Time

  1. Factors such as quantity ordered, procurement source, type of construction, manufacturer’s workload, requirements survey, cost, and the type of equipment used to manufacture the envelopes makes ordering lead time for envelopes critical.

  2. Lead time must be computed from the day Publishing receives the envelope requisition. Lead times listed below are accurate for most planning purposes.

    • Allow 30 workdays production time for the printing of envelopes on the contract for high-volume users.

    • Allow 15 workdays production time for printing of envelopes on the contract for low-volume users.

    • Allow 45 workdays for quantities of envelopes not covered on the GPO term contracts.  (11-19-2012)
Procurement Cycles

  1. Procurement of envelopes for high volume users (Submission Processing campuses, CPS sites, computing centers, etc.) will occur on quarterly cycles. This will allow the print contractor to group orders of like envelopes to increase print runs and reduce the cost of envelopes. It will also reduce the warehouse space needed to maintain adequate supplies of envelopes on hand.

  2. An explanation of this cycled ordering procedure is posted on the envelope program website at http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/epqtrs.html. Contractors are expecting to receive orders for these items at the times specified. Minimize off-cycle ordering as much as possible.

  3. Low-volume users may procure envelopes at any time using the IRS Office Envelope Contract. Customers must follow local business unit office procedures for the use of a government purchase card. Further information is provided at http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/envelope/envfield.html.  (11-19-2012)
Envelope Reference Information

  1. IRM 3.13.62, Media Transport and Control, provides a complete cross-referenced listing of envelopes used with various stuffers (forms, notices, and publications). This IRM may serve as a quick reference source for envelopes and forms mailing information. Customers should double-check information with the appropriate envelope and form product catalog information for complete accuracy.  (11-19-2012)
Internal Revenue Manual (IRM)

  1. The IRM is the official source of IRS policies and procedures (instructions to staff). The IRM contains directions employees need to carry out their job duties in administering tax laws or other agency obligations.

  2. IRM numbers, catalog numbers, and part, chapter and section titles identify the IRM. You can access Portable Document Format (PDF) and Extensible Markup Language (XML) files for IRMs from within the IRM Numerical Index.

  3. The Index contains links to product information, PDF files, and XML files for all active IRM sections. The IRM Numerical Index is updated automatically as IRM sections are published. To access the index, go to http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/irm/numind.html.  (11-19-2012)

  1. Preprinted letterhead is usable for official IRS correspondence, both internal and external. Standardized stationery provides a consistent image to the public, thus assuring taxpayers that IRS correspondence is official, legitimate, and professionally prepared.

  2. The standards for letterhead stationery, as well as notepads, are in accordance with IRM 1.10.1, IRS Correspondence Manual and the Government Printing and Binding Regulations issued by the Joint Committee on Printing (JCP). The Director, Executive Secretariat, and Office of the Commissioner must approve all proposals for new letterhead stationery and notepads.

  3. These guidelines create a standardized appearance in letterhead stationery and also apply to notepads.

    Trim Size Stock – External Use Only Stock – Internal Use Only Ink*
    8-1/2” x 11” 20# White Recycled 25% Rag Bond (JCP G-45) 20# White Writing Green – Pantone Matching System (PMS) 349
    Must have Eagle Watermark with Stars


    * IRS Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) is the only exception to green (PMS 349) ink. TAS letterhead may print black and one color.

  4. Packing: All letterhead stationery is shrink-wrapped in units of 100 and stored in the National Distribution Center (NDC). Customers must ordered letterhead in units of 100.

  5. Distribution: M&P’s Distribution organization monitors supply level. For information on obtaining official letterhead through M&P, see IRM, Letterhead/Stationery Program.

  6. Printing: All letterhead stationery prints the IRS logo, title of Heads of Office, the business unit/functional division, and the Washington DC address (with the exception of the Commissioner of Wage & Investment division; the W&I general letterhead will carry the Atlanta address). Taxpayer Advocate Service letterhead must also print the required “operates independently” statement in the masthead. To access Word templates for internal correspondence only, go to http://publish.no.irs.gov/pubsys/letterhead/lttrhead.html.  (11-19-2012)
Training Products

  1. Learning and Education (L&E) develops training products, and they are supported through the Enterprise Learning Management System (ELMS). This includes Training Products Distribution System (TPDS) products and Automated Data Processing (ADP) products used at IRS campuses.

  2. Training products are sometimes published as one-time pilot materials that will be used in the development of subsequent ELMS courses.

  3. Product originators must submit a PSR and the training materials, along with a Form 9123, Course Catalog Listing, to Publishing for production.  (11-19-2012)
Training Products Numbering

  1. The following types of numbers identify training products and courses:

    • ELMS Course Number

    • Course Catalog Number

    • Item Number

    • Item Catalog Number

  2. Obtaining a new ELMS official 5-digit course number is the responsibility of the product originator. L&E uses the course number to deliver training, build classes, plan resources, and give employees credit for attendance. Some courses still have the older 4-digit Administrative Corporate Education System (ACES) number and are still valid courses as they are revised year-to-year.

  3. The course catalog number, assigned by M&P’s TPDS Distribution contact, is the identifier used to order all training products required for a class. The course catalog number assigned will be between 80000-82999 plus one alpha character.

  4. Publishing uses the item number to identify each product in a course. This number uses the ELMS course number as the base number, followed by a hyphen and three numeric digits. Contact one of Publishing’s training team members for assistance with obtaining training item numbers.

  5. The item catalog number identifies a specific product. All IRS product types use this unique number for identification in the Core Repository of Published Products (CROPP). This item number, like the course catalog number, contains five numeric digits followed by one alpha character.  (11-19-2012)
Other Government Agency Products

  1. The IRS National Distribution Center (NDC) sometimes prints and stocks other government agency products, predominately General Services Administration (GSA) standard forms. IRS employees use these products on a reoccurring basis.

  2. When the IRS prints other government agency products, they must include the IRS catalog number along with the other agency’s item number. The catalog number should appear on the printed document in the following format:

    • IRS Catalog Number 99999X  (11-19-2012)
Miscellaneous Products

  1. Miscellaneous products are any products that are not forms, publications, documents, notices, letters, etc. Miscellaneous products include, but are not limited to:

    • Memos

    • Door posters

    • Notepads

    • Promotional items

    The IRS does not stock these products at the NDC or post them on a customer’s website or to Publishing’s catalog page.

  2. A product signature should appear on all miscellaneous published products. The signature is to be incorporated into all newly created, revised, or reprinted miscellaneous products. The miscellaneous signature will contain the product’s requisition number so that the product may be researched and referenced in the future.

  3. A product signature must appear on all miscellaneous published products unless production constraints or other reasons make it unreasonable to do so. Publishing has designed three variations of the miscellaneous signature. The product’s design and physical characteristics should determine the choice of signature variations. The publishing specialist and/or visual information specialist, following IRS design standards, may determine appropriate placement of the signature on the product.

  4. For additional information on IRS design standards, see IRM 1.17.7, Publishing - Use of the Official IRS Seal, IRS Logo, Program Logos, and Internal Logos and Document 12749, One IRS: Design Standards and Guidelines.  (11-19-2012)
Promotional Items Guidelines

  1. The purchase of promotional items that include logos or customized slogans could be viewed as frivolous and unnecessary. All IRS offices must discontinue such purchases. This includes but is not limited to the purchase of pens, mouse pads, mugs, and lanyards that are unique to your organization or to an event. You must obtain approval of any exceptions to this policy from either the:

    • Deputy Commissioner for Operations Support; or

    • Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement.  (11-19-2012)
Copyright and Copyrighted Material

  1. Copyright provides copyright owners a bundle of exclusive rights, including the right to authorize others to reproduce, transform, or distribute their copyrighted material.

  2. Copyright protection arises automatically once an original work of authorship is fixed in a tangible medium of expression now known or later developed.

  3. Copyright protection does not extend to any idea, procedure, process, system, method of operations, concept, principle, or discovery, regardless of the form in which it is described, explained, illustrated, or embodied in such work.

  4. The IRS will not knowingly include copyrighted material in their publications or other works without the license or written permission of the copyright owner.

  5. Because of the complexity of the Copyright Act, product originators will follow the safest course by obtaining written permission from the copyright owner, to avoid possible lawsuits due to copyright infringement. See IRM, Copyright Infringement.  (11-19-2012)
Requirements for Publishing Copyrighted Material

  1. All originators who want to include previously published material (in whole or in part) in government publications must do the following:

    • Find out if the material is copyrighted and who owns the copyright;

    • Get written permission from the copyright owner to print the material;

    • The permission statement must clearly define the specific material and its use, including any restrictions or limitations; and

    • Submit the original of the permission statement to Publishing, along with the PSR for printing and the material to be printed.  (11-19-2012)
Term of Copyright

  1. For works created on or after January 1, 1978, copyright protection endures for a term of the life of the author plus 70 years, as cited in 17 USC 302.

  2. For anonymous works, pseudonymous works, and works made for hire, the copyright term is 95 years from the date of first publication, or 120 years from the date of its creation, whichever is earlier, as cited in 17 USC 302.

  3. For works created before January 1, 1978, copyright protection endures for a term of 28 years from the date it originally was secured, with the ability to renew for another 67 years, as cited by 17 USC 304(a).  (11-19-2012)
Notice of Copyright

  1. A Notice of Copyright, while not required for works first published after March 1, 1989, informs the public that the work to which it is affixed is protected by copyright. A proper notice of copyright also serves to restrict a defense based on innocent infringement in mitigation of actual or statutory damages, as cited in 17 USC 102.  (11-19-2012)
Elements of a Notice of Copyright

  1. A notice of copyright as provided by 17 USC 401, consists of the following three elements:

    • The symbol © (the letter C in a circle), the word "Copyright" , or the abbreviation "Copr."

    • The year of first publication of the work

    • The name of the owner of copyright in the work, an abbreviation by which the name can be recognized, or a generally known alternative designation of the owner

    These elements must appear on all publicly distributed copies when copyrighted materials are included in a government publication, in such a manner and location as to give reasonable notice of copyright.  (11-19-2012)
Exceptions to Notice of Copyright Usage

  1. Government publications that are prepared by Government officers or employees as part of their official duties are not subject to copyright protection. See 17 USC 105.

  2. Thus, government publications prepared by the Government officers or employees as part of their official duties and that do not include copyrighted materials, should not include a copyright notice.  (10-15-2015)
"Fair Use" of Copyrighted Material

  1. "Fair use" allows use of copyrighted material by other than the copyright owner.

    • The courts recognize that certain limited uses of copyrighted material may be made without the copyright owner’s permission.

    • The copyright is not infringed when reasonable portions are used for purposes of criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research. See 17 USC 107.

  2. Fair Use, however, is not defined in the statute and it does not provide a bright line rule, which brings clarity to a law or regulation that could be read in two (or more) ways (Often a bright line is established when the need for a simple decision outweighs the need to weigh both sides of a particular issue.), for determining what is or is not a fair use. Rather, Fair Use identifies four non-exclusive factors that require evaluation on a case-by-case basis. See IRM, Copyright and Copyrighted Material.  (11-19-2012)
Factors for Determining "Fair Use"

  1. Consider the following factors when determining whether the use of a work is a "fair use" :

    • The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit, educational purposes;

    • The nature of the copyrighted work;

    • The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

    • The effect of the use on the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work, as cited in 17 USC 107.  (11-19-2012)
Copyright Infringement

  1. A copyright is infringed whenever any of the exclusive rights of a copyright owner is practiced without permission by another. Exclusive rights include copying, reproducing, printing, reprinting, publishing, exhibiting, translating, vending (all or portions of the copyrighted work), and, in some instances, oral delivery of performance of the work.

    • Where a copyright is infringed by or for the Government with its authorization or consent, the copyright owner’s exclusive remedy is to sue against the United States in the US Court of Federal Claims for damages or injunctive relief, as cited in 28 USC 1498(b).

    • If the owner is successful in a damages suit, court-imposed statutory damages can range from $750 to $30,000, as cited in 17 USC 504(c)(1).

    • If the infringement is determined willful, damages may lie against the United States up to $150,000, at the Court’s discretion, as cited in 17 USC 504(c)(2).  (11-19-2012)
Credit Lines

  1. Credit lines are courtesy acknowledgments for contributed materials not copyrighted or loaned by non-governmental parties.  (11-19-2012)
Credit Lines Restrictions

  1. Do not use credit lines if the material has been purchased for government use.

  2. Give credit in a single undisplayed paragraph if a single, non-governmental source provides different types of material for use in one item.  (11-19-2012)
Procurement Vehicles

  1. Publishing's mission is to plan, produce, or procure all IRS print and electronic communications products used by the public to comply with tax filing requirements and obligations, and used internally within the IRS for tax administration.


    Acquisitions other than print and electronic communications products are procured through the IRS Office of Procurement. Procurement is not authorized to purchase printing services.

  2. Publishing has a variety of procurement vehicles available to meet customer needs and requirements. The procurement processes used include:

    • Simplified Purchase Agreements

    • Term Contracts

    • One-Time Bids  (11-19-2012)
Simplified Purchase Agreements

  1. Simplified purchase agreements are streamlined publishing procurement vehicles that are sanctioned by the Government Publishing Office (GPO). Using simplified purchase agreements, publishing specialists can help customers acquire printing and publishing services from commercial printing vendors by directly placing orders or soliciting competitive quotes.  (11-19-2012)
Term Contracts

  1. Publishing establishes term contracts for products that are purchased on a repetitive basis. The GPO writes, awards, and administers these contracts. GPO awards term contracts to publishing vendors who can provide the best line-item prices for the covered services.  (11-19-2012)
One-Time Bids

  1. Published products that are not suited to other procurement vehicles are procurable using a one-time bid. Publishing specialists forward product requirements to the GPO, where the requirements are advertised to potential vendors. GPO awards the production contract to the lowest-bidding contractor.  (11-19-2012)
Availability of Internal-Use Products to the Public

  1. Official documents intended for internal use may be furnished to persons outside the Treasury Department in accordance with the guidelines in IRM 11.3.12, Designation of Documents and originator approval.

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