• Keith Fulfer

Protect yourself in 2021. Get an IRS IP PIN.


What was once reserved for those taxpayers who had experienced identity theft with a tax return has now been opened up for all taxpayers in all states. Every taxpayer now can apply for an Identity Protection Personal Identity Number (IP PIN).


How does this work. First you must apply and receive the PIN from the IRS. You can do that here:


https://www.irs.gov/identity-theft-fraud-scams/get-an-identity-protection-pin


Once you have been approved, the IRS will give you your IP PIN each year. This normally occurs toward the end of the year for the next tax year. You will have to give this IP PIN to your tax preparer (if you use one) or you will use it if you prepare your own taxes. If you fail to use it, your electronically filed return will be rejected by the IRS. There is a PIN issued to each individual taxpayer, so if you file married, only one taxpayer has to apply for the added security. On the other hand, if you both have a IP PIN, then you would have more security (and you would have to use both IP PINs on your return.


What will you need to apply?


The Service will require taxpayers to verify their identities using the Secure Access authentication process if they do not already have an IRS account. The IRS' Secure Access Web page has the information you need to be successful. (See above)

Here are the highlights of the information you need to have handy to apply:


This online process will require taxpayers to verify their identities using the Secure Access authentication process if they do not already have an IRS account. The IRS' Secure Access Web page has the information you need to be successful.

Here are the highlights of the information you need to have handy to apply:


  • Email address

  • Social Security Number or Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN)

  • Tax filing status and mailing address

  • One financial account number linked to your name. This could be a one of the following:

Credit card — You'll need the last 8 digits, but the IP PIN tool does not accept American Express, debit or corporate credit cards

Student loan — Enter the student loan account number provided on your statement. The account number may contain both numbers and letters. Do not include any symbols. However, says the IRS, it cannot verify student loans issued by Nelnet.

Mortgage or home equity loan

Home equity line of credit (HELOC)

Auto loan



For faster registration, you'll also need a mobile phone linked to your name. An activation code will be sent to that device.


The IRS uses the above information to ping your credit score to verify your identity. It will not affect your score and is used only for establishing your secure access.


If you do not have a mobile phone, or it is difficult for you to access the online features of the IRS you can file a paper form. Due to the amount of time this takes you will not be able to get a IP PIN for this year. You can also make an appointment if there is an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center in your area.


Feel free to give us a call to help you through this process.


You can also watch a video on the IRS YouTube channel here.


https://youtu.be/YhfSZuwGrlY




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