Retrieving Your Information from the IRS
In an effort to increase protection from identity theft, the IRS has made changes to how they will distribute taxpayer information. As of today, there are two major changes. First, a tax transcript can no longer be faxed. Second, transcripts can no longer be sent directly to a third-party.
A tax transcript is a summary of the information on your tax return. You may use this if you don’t have a copy of a previous return, or if you want to send your tax information to someone for non-tax purposes (like getting a loan). You should always be sure to keep your personally identifiable information secure.
Identity thieves have been posing as a taxpayer or a third-party person (they impersonate a lender or accountant) to retrieve previously filed information from tax transcripts. They then use the transcripts to file fraudulent returns. Since they are using previous data, these fraudulent returns are extremely difficult to detect.
Elimination of Faxing
As of June 28, 2019, you can no longer get your tax transcript faxed. Previously, either an individual or a tax professional could (legally) retrieve your information. Now, the taxpayer must make the request, not a third-party. Here are your options:
- Download: Go to irs.gov or the IRS2Go App app to access Get Transcript Online.
- Mail: Go to irs.gov or the IRS2Go App app to have the transcript delivered to you within 10 days. *Note: It will be sent to the address on record – YOUR address, not a third-party.
- Call: Dial 1-800-908-9946 to request a transcript.
No More Third-Party Mailing
Starting today, July 1, 2019, the IRS will no longer allow a third party to request transcripts. The request forms that have been removed were often used by lenders, colleges and universities, and tax professionals to verify income for non-tax purposes.
Instead, a third-party requester will have to ask the taxpayer for the data OR they will need to register for an IRS service called Income Verification Express Service (IVES). Upon receiving these transcripts, the third-party will receive a “masked” transcript that blacks out parts of the taxpayer’s information, such as Social Security Numbers. If your accountant is a Certified Public Accountant, there is an option for them to get an unmasked version.
Getting Your Information
All-in-all, this means going forward, taxpayers will have to request tax transcripts themselves by using the IRS portals. It is the responsibility of the taxpayer to send their information to their lender, school, or accountant. While this may seem like an inconvenience, improving security is a top priority for the IRS.
A tax transcript is generally needed when you don’t have access to a previously filed tax return. This good new is, if you use a system like TaxCaddy, your old returns are easily accessible AND secure. Email us today if you would like an invitation to sign up for your free TaxCaddy account!