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ERO, Designee's, Self-Select/Practioner/E-File Pins

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#1
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Hey all!

So I'm using our new tax software with tax wise and noticed many areas to enter the subjects specified pins.

I know that the Self-Select and Practitioner PIN are essentially the same except Practitioners make it for the client as opposed to the client making their own. My question is, if the client comes today and in later years, do we retain their current pin or can we make a new one each time?

Self-Select PIN - I know this differs from the IP PIN but how does a customer change it if they'd like to or is this something they would select on their subject to their own discretion and change at any time they want?

ERO PIN? - Is this the same as the practitioner pin?

E-FILE PIN - I know this is my pin for e-filing returns and I know I can change it on the e-services page online.

Designees PIN - Is this the same as any other pin or is it something we just choose to use at our discretion and free to change at any time?

I'm new to this and none of the education I've taken have exactly specified any of these concerns. I appreciate your time and attention.
 

#2
makbo  
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pnwcommtax wrote:E-FILE PIN - I know this is my pin for e-filing returns and I know I can change it on the e-services page online.

I have no idea what you are referring to here.

pnwcommtax wrote:I'm new to this and none of the education I've taken have exactly specified any of these concerns. I appreciate your time and attention.

You should review Pub 1345 and then come back with more specific questions if you still have them. One hint: if you are the ERO, you will almost certainly be using the Practitioner PIN method all the time, not the self-select PIN.
 

#3
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makbo wrote:
pnwcommtax wrote:E-FILE PIN - I know this is my pin for e-filing returns and I know I can change it on the e-services page online.

I have no idea what you are referring to here.

The E-File PIN is the section within the IRS E-Services under "modify Pin" and in there it states this is your E-File Pin or your pin you will use for E-File.

pnwcommtax wrote:I'm new to this and none of the education I've taken have exactly specified any of these concerns. I appreciate your time and attention.

You should review Pub 1345 and then come back with more specific questions if you still have them. One hint: if you are the ERO, you will almost certainly be using the Practitioner PIN method all the time, not the self-select PIN.
 

#4
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makbo wrote:
pnwcommtax wrote:E-FILE PIN - I know this is my pin for e-filing returns and I know I can change it on the e-services page online.

I have no idea what you are referring to here.

pnwcommtax wrote:I'm new to this and none of the education I've taken have exactly specified any of these concerns. I appreciate your time and attention.

You should review Pub 1345 and then come back with more specific questions if you still have them. One hint: if you are the ERO, you will almost certainly be using the Practitioner PIN method all the time, not the self-select PIN.


More specifically, I'm asking if these pins change at anyone's discretion or do taxpayers/preparers have to remember this information?
 

#5
makbo  
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pnwcommtax wrote:The E-File PIN is the section within the IRS E-Services under "modify Pin" and in there it states this is your E-File Pin or your pin you will use for E-File.

You've got that wrong. There is a login PIN for your e-Services account that you can modify (it's part of account login security), but it has nothing to do with a PIN required to efile a return as an ERO (practitioner).

To answer your other question, yes the self select PIN, the 3rd party designee PIN, and the Practitioner PIN can be changed from year to year.
Last edited by makbo on 4-Jan-2019 8:32pm, edited 1 time in total.
 

#6
irc162  
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makbo wrote:
pnwcommtax wrote:The E-File PIN is the section within the IRS E-Services under "modify Pin" and in there it states this is your E-File Pin or your pin you will use for E-File.

You've got that wrong. There is a login PIN for your e-Services account that you can modify (it's part of account login security), but it has nothing to do with a PIN required to efile a return as an ERO (practitioner).

To answer your other question, yes the self select PIN, the 3rd party designee PIN, and the Practioner PIN can be changed from year to year.


Drake (for example) has preparers enter their PIN to show they are signing the return and it is ready for E File. The preparer's PIN prints out in the Third Party Designee section of the return (there is a box for this) This PIN number is self selected by the preparer and Drake allows you to change this at will. As far as I know, the PIN used for this purpose does not necessarily need to be the same as a PIN entered in E Services. Mine isn't. I seem to recall that the E Services PIN was used to verify E Services adjustments many years ago. I think the E Servics PIN and the E file PIN are apples and oranges.
 

#7
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makbo wrote:
pnwcommtax wrote:The E-File PIN is the section within the IRS E-Services under "modify Pin" and in there it states this is your E-File Pin or your pin you will use for E-File.

You've got that wrong. There is a login PIN for your e-Services account that you can modify (it's part of account login security), but it has nothing to do with a PIN required to efile a return as an ERO (practitioner).

To answer your other question, yes the self select PIN, the 3rd party designee PIN, and the Practioner PIN can be changed from year to year.


Thanks for the answer response.

This is what I get from the same section I've described under e-services. If the e-services PIN differs from the PIN required to sign an e-file, why does it state this on the IRS e-services site when going under modify pin?

e-services PIN
e-services requires each user to have a Personal Identification Number (PIN) to be used to sign your e-file, TIN Matching, IVES and ACA applications. Please enter a five digit PIN (cannot be all the same digits) in the field below and click the Submit button.
PIN (Required)

Re-enter PIN (Required)
 

#8
irc162  
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pnwcommtax wrote:
makbo wrote:
pnwcommtax wrote:The E-File PIN is the section within the IRS E-Services under "modify Pin" and in there it states this is your E-File Pin or your pin you will use for E-File.

You've got that wrong. There is a login PIN for your e-Services account that you can modify (it's part of account login security), but it has nothing to do with a PIN required to efile a return as an ERO (practitioner).

To answer your other question, yes the self select PIN, the 3rd party designee PIN, and the Practioner PIN can be changed from year to year.


Thanks for the answer response.

This is what I get from the same section I've described under e-services. If the e-services PIN differs from the PIN required to sign an e-file, why does it state this on the IRS e-services site when going under modify pin?

e-services PIN
e-services requires each user to have a Personal Identification Number (PIN) to be used to sign your e-file, TIN Matching, IVES and ACA applications. Please enter a five digit PIN (cannot be all the same digits) in the field below and click the Submit button.
PIN (Required)

Re-enter PIN (Required)



The section you quoted says you are required to have a PIN to sign your E File, TIN Matching, IVES and ACA applications....It doesn't say anything about tax returns. It is telling you that you need to have a PIN to sign your application to be an E file Provider, your application for TIN matching etc.
 

#9
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[/b][/i][/quote]


The section you quoted says you are required to have a PIN to sign your E File, TIN Matching, IVES and ACA applications....It doesn't say anything about tax returns. It is telling you that you need to have a PIN to sign your application to be an E file Provider, your application for TIN matching etc.[/quote]

Where would you obtain this PIN if not located with the IRS E-Services? I wouldn't understand why they wouldn't streamline this process to allow you to do this within the IRS e-services. Also, for any of the above subjects, TIN, IVES, ACA, this PIN would differ? Any help is appreciated.
 

#10
makbo  
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irc162 wrote: The preparer's PIN prints out in the Third Party Designee section of the return (there is a box for this) This PIN number is self selected by the preparer and Drake allows you to change this at will. [...] I think the E Servics PIN and the E file PIN are apples and oranges.

No, the "preparer's PIN" does not print out in the Third Party Designee (TPD) section. The TPD PIN prints out in the TPD section (note that a TPD does not need to be, but can be, a paid preparer). There is no such thing as a "preparer's PIN". Paid preparers have a PTIN, which is the only ID number they are required to enter into the return itself.

Note before you start scratching your head: a paid preparer, an ERO, and a TPD are three separate, independent roles that can be, but do not have to be, the same person. Any combination of these three things can be involved with a tax return, including none of them. If you can't get past this part, you'll never get it.

pnwcommtax wrote:This is what I get from the same section I've described under e-services. If the e-services PIN differs from the PIN required to sign an e-file, why does it state this on the IRS e-services site when going under modify pin?

e-services PIN
e-services requires each user to have a Personal Identification Number (PIN) to be used to sign your e-file, TIN Matching, IVES and ACA applications.

Please try reading what you just quoted. It contains the answer to your "why" question. The e-services PIN is used as part of login security at e-services, so that when you sign an efile application (not a return), they can have some confidence it's really you. Once you are an approved ERO with your own EFIN, you may possibly never need to log in to e-services ever again (although you are required to update your business address or change in ownership of your firm).

Note that your eservices login PIN should be kept secret, as it is a type of password. Using this PIN anywhere on a tax return would be a huge mistake, as it would potentially compromise the security of your eservices account.

Maybe your confusion comes from the PIN used by an ERO to certify and authenticate the Practitioner PIN method (only) signature for the ERO (Form 8879). This is an arbitrary 5-digit PIN, just like the taxpayer's self-select or Practitioner PIN, and is not linked in any way to anything at the IRS e-services login site. If you have bothered to consult Pub 1345 as I recommended, you would have found this:

"EROs must also sign with a PIN. EROs should use the same PINs for the entire tax year [but are not required to]. The ERO may manually input or the software can generate the PIN in the electronic record in the location designated for the ERO Electronic Filing Identification Number (EFIN)/PIN. The ERO is attesting to the ERO Declaration by entering a PIN in the ERO EFIN/PIN field."

It's true that some professional software will allow the paid preparer to enter in one place a five digit PIN that is automatically used for both the TPD and ERO/Practitioner PIN method signature, but that has nothing at all to do with what is actually required and what role it actually plays.

Finally, if it's still not clear, any PIN you enter and maintain at the e-services login site has nothing whatsoever to do with you preparing and efiling a specific taxpayer's return.
Last edited by makbo on 4-Jan-2019 8:32pm, edited 1 time in total.
 

#11
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makbo wrote:
irc162 wrote: The preparer's PIN prints out in the Third Party Designee section of the return (there is a box for this) This PIN number is self selected by the preparer and Drake allows you to change this at will. [...] I think the E Servics PIN and the E file PIN are apples and oranges.

No, the "preparer's PIN" does not print out in the Third Party Designee (TPD) section. The TPD PIN prints out in the TPD section (note that a TPD does not need to be, but can be, a paid preparer). There is no such thing as a "preparer's PIN". Paid preparers have a PTIN, which is the only ID number they are required to enter into the return itself.

Note before you start scratching your head: a paid preparer, an ERO, and a TPD are three separate, independent roles that can be, but do not have to be, the same person. Any combination of these three things can be involved with a tax return, including none of them. If you can't get past this part, you'll never get it.

pnwcommtax wrote:This is what I get from the same section I've described under e-services. If the e-services PIN differs from the PIN required to sign an e-file, why does it state this on the IRS e-services site when going under modify pin?

e-services PIN
e-services requires each user to have a Personal Identification Number (PIN) to be used to sign your e-file, TIN Matching, IVES and ACA applications.

Please try reading what you just quoted. It contains the answer to your "why" question. The e-services PIN is used as part of login security at e-services, so that when you sign an efile application (not a return), they can have some confidence it's really you. Once you are an approved ERO with your own EFIN, you may possibly never need to log in to e-services ever again (although you are required to update your business address or change in ownership of your firm).

Note that your eservices login PIN should be kept secret, as it is a type of password. Using this PIN anywhere on a tax return would be a huge mistake, as it would potentially compromise the security of your eservices account.

Maybe your confusion comes from the PIN used by an ERO to certify and authenticate the Practitioner PIN method (only) signature for the ERO (Form 8879). This is an arbitrary 5-digit PIN, just like the taxpayer's self-select or Practitioner PIN, and is not linked in any way to anything at the IRS e-services login site. If you have bothered to consult Pub 1345 as I recommended, you would have found this:

"EROs must also sign with a PIN. EROs should use the same PINs for the entire tax year [but are not required to]. The ERO may manually input or the software can generate the PIN in the electronic record in the location designated for the ERO Electronic Filing Identification Number (EFIN)/PIN. The ERO is attesting to the ERO Declaration by entering a PIN in the ERO EFIN/PIN field."

It's true that some professional software will allow the paid preparer to enter in one place a five digit PIN that is automatically used for both the TPD and ERO/Practioner PIN method signature, but that has nothing at all to do with what is actually required and what role it actually plays.

Finally, if it's still not clear, any PIN you enter and maintain at the e-services login site has nothing whatsoever to do with you preparing and efiling a specific taxpayer's return.


That was actually very helpful. I did indeed read PUB 1345 and I got a lot of useful information from the PUB that helped me understand a few things I had questions on. Thank you so much for all of the clarity you have provided me. :)
 

#12
makbo  
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It's interesting how many times the mis-spelled word "Practioner" appears in this thread, including the subject (title) of the thread, plus several of my original posts (since edited).
 

#13
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makbo wrote:It's interesting how many times the mis-spelled word "Practioner" appears in this thread, including the subject (title) of the thread, plus several of my original posts (since edited).


I've grown accustomed now to research all of my questions on IRS Pubs. Its been real helpful to answer a lot of my questions that I have learned but forgotten over the course of the school. I'm growing my "Practioner" skills. :lol:
 


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