In January 2021 the IRS started allowing all eligible taxpayers to opt-in to the identity protection personal identification number (IP PIN) program. Previously, this program was only available to taxpayers whose identities had been stolen. The IP PIN is a six-digit number known only to the taxpayer and the IRS that is used to help the IRS verify the taxpayer’s identity when filing their electronic or paper tax return. The tax software will have a place to enter the IP PIN, or it can be entered next to the signature line on a paper return. Taxpayers will receive a CP01A notice each year with their new IP PIN.

Taxpayers can obtain an IP PIN online by visiting and clicking “Get an IP PIN” (note that the “Get an IP PIN” tool is not available from mid-November to mid-January each year). They must then validate their identity with the IRS to receive the number. The following items will be needed for identity verification:

  • Email address
  • Social security number 
  • Tax filing status
  • Mailing Address
  • One financial account linked to the taxpayer’s name (e.g., credit card, student loan, mortgage, auto loan, etc.)
  • Mobile phone linked to the taxpayer’s name

If you are unable to pass the online identity verification and you have a valid social security number and AGI of $72,000 or less, you can file Form 15227. Someone from the IRS will then call you and verify your identity so that you can have an IP PIN for the next filing season. If you do not meet these criteria, you can verify your identity in person at a Taxpayer Assistance Center. The IP PIN will then be mailed to you.

As of now, taxpayers who opt-in for 2021 will have the option to opt-out during 2022.  It is also important to note that a mistake or omission when using the number could prevent e-filing or delay processing the tax return, so it’s imperative that the taxpayer provide their tax preparer with the correct number. Also, because a new number is mailed out each year, if the taxpayer moves, they will need to update the IRS with Form 8322, Change of Address, to make sure that the number is sent to the right place. 

The primary, secondary taxpayer, or a dependent can obtain an IP PIN upon proof of identity.  Since the online tool is closed from mid-November to mid-January, we recommend accessing this online tool now to receive your IP PIN in time for filing your 2021 income tax returns.  Don’t wait until January as many falsely filed income tax returns are filed early and in advance of your correct filing.  We highly recommend using this program.

If you have any questions about the IRS’s IP PIN program or want to discuss whether you should opt-in to the program, please get in touch with a member of the Kimble team.