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Internal: Process for Completing a Firm Merge

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Before proceeding with any of the steps involved in the Firm Merge process, it must be determined that the given situation is truly a firm merge as Thomson Reuters defines it. Only Customer Service representatives should handle this conversation with the firm.

If the location of all software will be changing to a different location this would be considered a Firm Merge. If this is not the case, see Guidelines for changing a name, address, and/or licensing information to determine the correct course of action to follow.

Note: This process should also be followed when both location and ownership are changing for all software. If the software is being maintained at the current location, a license transfer is more likely the process to be followed.

Steps to Complete a Firm Merge

  1. Identify all Firm IDs involved.
  2. Review product mix and who the licensees for each product are with the caller for all involved firms.
    • If there are any Web Services involved, it must be determined if the intention is to continue or cancel the services because Web Services cannot be transferred. For additional information about cancellations, see Web Services Cancellations.
    • Determine if the current firm also intends to continue using any of the software. If so a software repurchase might be needed.
  3. Based on the above, what does the caller want to happen and in what time frame?
  4. Once the desired outcome has been identified the Customer Service representative will offer a callback, and complete additional research and use the next steps. The Research Guidelines section below detail what to research dependent on the given situation.
  5. Once research has been completed contact the external user to provide the following:
    • A completed, signed, and initialed Firm Merge form that the Customer Service Representative will fill out for the firm.
    • Steps needed to achieve the desired outcome identified.
    • An explanation of the fees needed to complete this request. Clearly explain the cost for additional users or units needed to facilitate the transition.
    • Upon receipt, the turnaround time is typically 5-7 business days for most requests. Submit the Firm Merge form when the transition needs to occur, with consideration given to the amount of time needed to complete it.

Note: All forms are available within MKT.  For additional information about Licensing & Piracy requirements for completing a merge, see the Process for completing a License transfers.

Research Guidelines

The information that needs to be gathered is dependent upon whether there is an existing firm ID, software use will continue at both firms, and if there are Web Services involved. Review each of the research topics outlined below based on the firm's given situation.

New Location for Products

The research that needs to be completed will be dependent upon whether the new location has an existing firm ID or not. See below for the specific steps to follow in each given scenario:

  1. Review license types for each product in EMS for both IDs involved. For any products that are owned by both firms, the license types must be the same in order to complete the move. See Types of Licensing for additional information.
    • If the network types are different, submit a $0 EOR to have this corrected. In all cases we should attempt to make the licenses Standard type when possible.
  2. Review network types for each product in EMS for both IDs involved. For any products that are owned by both firms, the network types must be the same in order to complete the move.
    • If the network types are different, work with Order Team to determine the correct upgrade or downgrade pricing for the desired outcome.
  3. Ensure that all products being moved to the new ID are current, expired products cannot be moved. For additional information on reinstating expired products, see Reinstatement Policy for Expired Products.
  4. This scenario would require the completion of the Firm Merge/Split Request form which can be sent via the Marketing Email Library (MEL). See the above Steps to Complete a Firm Merge for details on completing the form.

In this scenario the receiving firm does not have an existing ID, the steps to be taken will depend on whether the current firm will continue software use or not.

  • If the current firm will be discontinuing all software use there would not be a need for a new Firm ID to be created, and demographic information such as firm name and address can be updated when the licensee is ready for those changes to take affect. This scenario would only require the completion of the License Transfer form if the current licensee wishes to transfer ownership to a new individual.
  • If the current firm intends to continue using the software and add additional products or services, a new firm ID will be required. Contact Sales Reception to create the new firm ID and assign a Sales Representative. Use the Firm Merge/Split Request form to move the current products to the new firm ID. See the Steps for Completing a Firm Merge above.

Continued Software Used

It must also be determined if the current firm intends to continue using any of the software the licensee is taking to a new location.

Web Services

Are there any Web Services products owned by either firm involved? If so the following considerations need to be made:

UltraTax CS

Is UltraTax CS owned by either firm involved? Ensure the renewal is maintained when possible

EFIN

In the case of a firm merge, split, or acquisition, the EFIN is owned by the firm and assigned by the IRS. The EFIN will stay with the firm name it was assigned to, and the new entity must apply for a new EFIN with the IRS. If a firm goes two years without efiling, the EFIN is disabled.

Related Topics/Information:

Completing a license transfer

Multi-Office License Guidelines

Piracy Investigation and Resolution Guidelines