E-file application summary and EFIN requirement overview

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Our Support department is closed on [[date]]. However, limited UltraTax CS phone support is available on that date from 9 AM - 5 PM ET due to the approaching deadline.

Links to our most popular tax processing topics are available in the Alerts and notices section on the right side of most pages.

Additional taxpayer and tax return preparer safeguards will be implemented for the 2018 filing season as part of the Security Summit partnership involving the Internal Revenue Service, state tax agencies, and the private-sector industry. The Security Summit Partners initiatives will enhance authentication efforts of tax return preparers and transmitters using Electronic Filing Identification Numbers (EFINs). These new guidelines require that all software providers retain a copy of each customer's e-file application summary, even if an e-file acceptance letter or a screen shot from irs.gov has already been submitted. To learn more about the IRS and its Security Summit Partners initiatives, visit Protect Your Clients; Protect Yourself.

If you are new to UltraTax CS, or you have received a new EFIN from the IRS, submit your e-file application summary to Thomson Reuters now to electronically file returns using UltraTax CS. 

Obtaining your e-file application summary

A copy of your IRS e-file application summary is required before you can electronically file tax returns. You'll need to access your e-services account and provide a copy of the IRS e-file application summary.

This is a summary of the application submitted and approved by the IRS for your EFIN number and allows Thomson Reuters to verify your eligibility to electronically file returns.

For assistance generating your e-file application summary, please see IRS e-file application summary required prior to e-filing with UltraTax CS.

You will be unable to electronically file returns in 2017 UltraTax CS until we verify your EFIN.

If you are uncertain if you have created an e-services portal, or if you need assistance with login errors, verifying login credentials, or accessing your IRS e-services portal contact the IRS e-Help desk at 866.255.0654.

Access to the e-file application summary will only be available using the login credentials for the individual who applied for and received the EFIN from the IRS. For assistance with login errors, verifying login credentials, or accessing your IRS e-services portal contact the IRS e-Help desk at 866.255.0654.

Submitting your e-file application summary

Send your e-file application summary to EFINCertificate@TR.com, please include your firm ID number in the subject line. If you are unsure of your firm ID number, see How to locate the firm ID number.

If you have more than one EFIN number associated with your account, we'll need an IRS e-file application summary for each EFIN number.

Send a single message to EFINCertificate@tr.com and indicate in the body of the message the firms IDs for each office location that will be using the EFIN associated with the attached e-file application. This will allow e-filing approval to be reviewed for all office locations utilizing that EFIN. If you are unsure of your firm ID number, see How to locate the firm ID number.

Verifying your e-file approval status

After submitting your e-file application summary to EFINCertificate@TR.com you will receive a confirmation email letting you know your message has been received. If you do not receive this confirmation within 24-hours of submitting your e-file application summary, please re-send it. After your submission has been reviewed you will receive a confirmation email letting you know your approval status. The turnaround time is typically 24-48 business hours after receipt.

To verify your e-file approval status within UltraTax CS, compete the following steps:

  1. Choose Setup > Office Configuration and then click the E-Filing tab.
  2. If the “All returns in this office will file using EFIN” option is marked, the assigned EFIN will show in the EFIN field. If the “Several EFINs are being used.” option is marked, the assigned EFINs can be reviewed in the Preparers tab.
  3. To confirm you have successfully verified the listed EFIN(s), open the UltraTax CS Home Page and click Alerts. If you see a message labeled "Action Required - Electronic Filing Identification Number (EFIN) Verification", your firm has not submitted an EFIN application summary for the EFIN listed. Show me.
    EFIN alert

    Note: If you have already submitted an application summary for the listed EFIN and received a confirmation message from EFINCertificate@TR.com, refresh your Home Page to clear this alert.

Frequently asked questions

No. Once verified you do not need to resubmit your e-file application summary to us each year. However, if you change your firm's demographic information - such as your name or address - a new e-file application summary may be required. For details, see Change your firm name, address, and/or phone number.

To protect taxpayers, the IRS has strengthened security measures around the available IRS online tools, including e-Services. Between December 1 and December 16, the IRS mailed Letter 5903 to some e-Services users. If you received letter 5903 you were required to re-validate your identity within 30 days, either online or by phone.

If you received Letter 5903 and did not re-validate your identity within the 30 day time frame, your e-services registration account was suspend by the IRS. This will produce an electronic filing error R0000-905-01 when transmitting a tax return to the IRS. Follow the instructions in Important update about your e-services account to restore your e-Services account and ability to e-file tax returns.

No. The e-file application summary available via the IRS e-Services portal is the only documentation that will be accepted. If you have applied for and received an EFIN number from the IRS you will have access to this documentation.

As part of the initial electronic returns configuration the option to use either a single firm wide EFIN or several was selected. This can be viewed in the Setup > Office Configuration > E-Filing tab.

If the “All returns in this office will file using EFIN:” option is marked, the assigned EFIN will show in the EFIN field. If the “Several EFINs are being used.” option is marked, the assigned EFINs can be reviewed in the Preparers tab. To review the assigned EFIN number for each listed preparer click the name of the preparer and then click the Edit button. An e-file application summary will be required for each listed EFIN you plan to to electronically file returns with.

Thomson Reuters is required to validate all EFIN numbers in use by our customers; therefore, the return would be rejected. For details, see EFIN verification required for electronic filing through CS Connect.

Yes. In order to electronically file returns with UltraTax CS an EFIN number issued from the IRS is required. After the IRS has approved your e-file application and assigned your EFIN number, provide a copy of the e-file application summary. For assistance, see Applying to e-file within the E-File Help Center.

Yes. If you intend to use prior years of UltraTax CS to electronically file returns an e-file application summary will be required.

Support representatives- E-file approval status can be verified in EMS, see Verifying e-file approval status in EMS

Additional resources

EFIN verification required for electronic filing through CS Connect

E-file Help CenterE-File Help Center

Internal notes

Talking to users about submitting e-file application summaries

Electronic filing capabilities were disabled on January 5, 2017, for any firm who has not not submitted an e-file application summary and been approved. We have communicated this new requirement to users in numerous ways since as early as May, 2016. See the communication points section below for our full communication strategy.

E-file approval status can be verified in EMS, see, Internal: Verifying e-file approval status in EMS or Internal: Verifying an EFIN's status by firm ID.

Submitting e-file application summaries

Security concerns with emailing summaries

Options to protect the security of the EFIN number when transmitting the request via email include:

  • Sending documentation via Sharefile or other encrypted programs.
  • Password protect the attachment with Firm ID or some other combination of information that Thomson Reuters would have on file for their account. The email message could simply state, to access the attached document enter the Firm id and zip code.
  • E-file application summaries may also be submitted by physical mail. Send summaries attention to Jason Cox to 6300 Interfirst Drive Ann ARbor, MI 48108.

Requests to fax summaries

Faxing is not a secure transmission method for e-file application summaries.

  • If the external user must fax in the e-file application summary, faxes may be sent to 734.426.5946.
  • The full EFIN number must be left in tact when submitting the application summary. The specific EFIN is what is being validated. This means this information will be visible to anyone on our end with access to the fax. This is many more individuals than the limited secure group that manages the inbox.

Summaries received through KANA

If an e-file application summary has been submitted directly to you or a KANA inbox by the external user, please forward their message to EFINCertificate@TR.com. In the body of the message include the contact and email address the confirmation message needs to be sent to, and include the Firm ID in the subject line.

Troubleshooting printing to pdf

Step ten of the instructional topic prompts the reader to create a pdf of their e-file summary. This process will vary based the on the browser and/or the print to pdf driver installed. If the external user has navigated to the Print Summary option on the e-file application summary and they do not have the ability to print to pdf, they may need to download and install a pdf print driver. There are several available for free download, we recommend CutePDF writer as a possible solution.

Communication points 

The following is a list of all the ways that the above has been communicated to date.

  • May 2016- included in renewal communication that went out to all UltraTax CS firms. In addition the online renewals contain the following:
    • A side bar reference in the Manage My Products section of My Account.
    • The second page of the online renewal makes a similar reference. It is visible after navigating to MY ACCOUNT > MANAGE MY PRODUCTS > START RENEWAL.
  • June 2016- EFIN campaign tickets were added to Flash, and Customer Service began proactively mentioning this on all incoming calls.
  • July 18, 2016- announcement added to the Product News section of the UltraTax CS homepage.
  • August 18, 2016- Software as a Service users received an email reminder, and a blog post was released on the CS Professional Suite website.
  • September 8, 2016- several points of communication were made as follows:
  • September 9, 2016- A prompt was added to the hold message in the queue to communicate the new requirements.
  • September 15, 2016- A postcard was mailed to any remaining user who had not yet submitted their summary.
  • October 18, 2016- December 22, 2016- Proactive User Services calling campaign to those firms who have not submitted e-file application summaries. Additional details for those working on this campaign can be found on the Hub, see Proactive EFIN calling campaign.

    Note: Some foreign firms may have been contacted during this campaign. If they are returning a call or email we simply need to know that they are not electronically filing returns and to make them aware that this will be disabled for them. Customer Service representatives may update this in EMS, otherwise work with the Customer Service call facilitator to get EMS updated.

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