This site is for Certified Professional Employer Organizations and other organizations applying for certification, only. If you received Letter 4883C or Letter 5071C, please see the Identity Verification Service information.


The Individual Identity Verification process is a one-time process that allows the IRS to validate an individual’s identity by asking personal questions in conjunction with questions from the individual’s most recently filed tax return. This is a mandatory process that applies to any individual submitting either a  Responsible Individual Personal Attestation (RIPA) or an application for certification.

If you have never filed a U.S. Individual Income tax return, the IRS will be unable to verify your identity online. The inability to have your identity verified online may increase the overall processing time for an application for certification.

What You Need to Complete Individual Identity Verification

You need your most recent individual tax return to begin your Individual Identity Verification Application:

The information you submit must match exactly what was on your most recently filed federal individual income tax return. If the information does not match and your identity cannot be verified, you won’t be able to finish additional activities within the IRS Online Registration System.

You must answer these pre-screening questions for us to determine your eligibility.

  1. Do you have a Social Security Number?
  2. Are you 18 years of age or older?
  3. Have you filed a U.S. individual income tax return in the last five (5) years?

More information about completing your Individual Identity Verification

If your tax return includes a name suffix (for example Jr or Sr), you have two options when filling out your basic information for Individual Identity Verification.

  • You may omit the suffix altogether.
  • You may enter your suffix in the Last Name field. If you enter the suffix, don’t include any punctuation. Including punctuation could cause your identity proofing attempt to fail. For example, if your name is Thomas Smith Jr. you would only enter "Smith Jr" in the Last Name field.

If you encounter a problem with your date of birth, you will need to contact the Social Security Administration (SSA) and confirm or correct your date of birth.  If SSA corrects it, wait 14 calendar days and try to complete the Individual Identity Verification process again. If SSA confirms that your date of birth is correct, or if SSA corrects your date of birth but you are still having problems, contact the Online Registration Helpdesk between the hours of 9:30 AM and 6:00 PM Eastern Standard Time (EST).

After you complete the verification, you will be assigned an Individual (INDV) Number. Your INDV number will show your rank within the online registration system.  After completing identity verification, your rank shows as “ID-Proofed” in the “My Information” box of the Main Menu screen of your online account.

After completing the Identity Verification process, a responsible individual must also complete and submit a Responsible Individual Personal Attestation (RIPA). Once submission of the RIPA is complete, the responsible individual must share their INDV number with the account submitter of each CPEO applicant for which they are a responsible individual. Not providing this information could cause a potential CPEO applicant to not be able to apply for certification.

CPEO Application

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