General and form-related guidelines for 1041 electronic filing

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The following links provide information about miscellaneous guidelines that do not refer to specific input screens, as well as information about IRS limitations to the number of characters that can be entered in certain fields. Follow these guidelines to create IRS-acceptable electronic files. You can find a more complete list of these guidelines and procedures for the Form 1041 e-File Program in the IRS publication.

Note: Further information is available at the IRS website at www.irs.gov/forms-instructions.

  • Alpha characters consist of the upper-case letters A through Z. No other characters are allowed in alpha-only fields. Few fields are alpha-only fields.
  • Numeric characters consist of the numbers 0 through 9. These characters are used in all of the numeric information fields.
  • Alphanumeric characters consist of the upper-case letters A through Z and numbers 0 through 9. These characters are allowed in most text fields.
  • Special characters generally include ampersand (&), hyphen (-), percent (%), backslash (\), among others. The IRS may or may not allow certain special characters. For additional information, refer to IRS Publication 4164, Modernized e-File (MeF) Guide for Software Developers And Transmitters.

Note: UltraTax CS strips invalid characters from fields and converts all lower-case characters to upper-case alpha characters in the electronic file.

Attached text is not recognized in the electronic return. Use the statement dialog for the Preparer notes field on Screen ELF or the statement dialog for the General footnote field on Screen 1041 to enter general information to be included in the electronic tax return.

Note: To include text in the Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, or Wisconsin electronic file, use the General Footnote fields on the Gen screen in the applicable state application.

By default, Forms 8453-FE and 8879-F print in the government collation for electronically filed 1041 returns.

For more information, see Customizing the print collation for returns filed electronically.

The IRS 1041 electronic filing program requires a name control field for the estate's or trust's name. UltraTax CS uses the data entered in the Family name for electronic filing name control field on Screen 1041 to calculate the name control. The calculated value is displayed in the Name control field on Screen ELF. UltraTax CS provides a field on Screen ELF to override the calculated value, if necessary. If the name control text is not correct, change the entry on Screen 1041 or enter the correct name control in the Name control: Force field on Screen ELF.

The IRS determines the name control differently depending on how the Employer Identification Number (EIN) of the estate or trust was obtained; therefore, name control text should be reviewed for correctness based on the following criteria.

  • If the EIN was requested via the internet, the name control should be derived from the first four characters of the name of the estate or trust.
  • If the EIN was requested via Form SS-4, the name control should be derived as follows:
    • For estates, the name control should be derived from the first four characters of the last name of the decedent.
    • For trusts when an individual is listed, the name control should be derived from the first four characters of the last name of the individual.
    • For trusts when a corporation, association, or endowment is part of the trust name, the name control should be derived from the first four characters of the name of the corporation, association, or endowment.
    • For numbered trusts and GNMA Pools, the name control should be derived from the first four digits of the trust number.

Note: When an Employer Identification Number (EIN) is obtained, the IRS issues notice CP 575.B. The name control is displayed after the date of application on the (IRS Use Only) line on the top of the second page of the notice.

For more information, refer to IRS Publication 4164, Modernized e-File (MeF) Guide for Software Developers And Transmitters.

The trust or estate name can contain only alpha characters (A-Z), numeric characters (0-9), and the following special characters: ampersand (&) and hyphen (-). The first character of the trust or estate name must be an alpha character.

If a beneficiary's name or the estate's or trust's name contains a title or suffix that can be expressed as a numeric relationship, convert the title or suffix to a Roman numeral. For example, enter Jim Smith 3rd as Jim Smith III.

Related topic: Entering data for 1041 electronic returns overview

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