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Identity Protection PIN: Opt-In Program for Taxpayers

January 19, 2021


You are now eligible to voluntarily get an Identity Protection PIN that will help protect you from tax-related identity theft.

What is the IP PIN?

The IP PIN is a 6-digit number assigned to eligible taxpayers. It helps prevent identity thieves from filing fraudulent tax returns with stolen Social Security numbers (SSNs). An IP PIN helps the IRS verify taxpayers’ identities and accept their electronic or paper tax returns for processing. The IRS issues IP PINs to confirmed identity theft victims once their cases are resolved. This process is unchanged. What is new is that any taxpayers who wants an IP PIN, even if they are not victims of identity theft, may now obtain one.

About the IP PIN Opt-in Program

Here’s what you need to know before applying for your IP PIN:

  • This is voluntary program.
  • You must pass a rigorous identity verification process.
  • Spouses and dependents are eligible for an IP PIN if they can verify their identities.
  • An IP PIN is valid for a calendar year.
  • You must obtain a new IP PIN each filing season, using the online tool.
  • The IP PIN tool is unavailable generally mid-November through mid-January each year.
  • Correct IP PINs must be entered on electronic and paper tax returns to avoid rejection and delays.

How to Get an IP PIN

The fastest, easiest and preferred way is by using the Get an IP PIN online tool. Here’s how it works:

  • Got to IRS.gov/IPPIN, select the Get an IP PIN tool, verify your identity and create an account
  • Once you have a username, password and security code, enter the Get an IP PIN tool
  • Your IP PIN will be revealed to you.

Can’t pass online identity proofing?

There are alternatives but there will be a delay in obtaining an IP PIN. Here’s how it works:

  • File Form 15227 if you have a valid SSN or ITIN, an adjusted gross income of $72,000 or less and access to a telephone. An IRS assistor will call you, validate your identity and ensure that you have receive an IP PIN the next filing season.
  • If you are ineligible for Form 15227, call the IRS for in-person options.

IMPORTANT: The IRS will never email, text or call you to request your IP PIN. Do not reveal your IP PIN to anyone but your trusted tax software provider or tax preparer. Neither your provider nor preparer will ask for your IP PIN except to complete your tax return. Protect your IP PIN from theft, especially scams.

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American Institute of CPAs, Virginia Society of CPAs.