How Does a First-Time Tax Return Filer Get a PIN?

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To file your tax return using the IRS electronic filing service, e-file, you will need a personal identification number used to verify your identity. The PIN allows you to sign your return electronically, eliminating the need to mail in forms. If you are a first-time filer over age 16, you can receive a PIN. You can either create your own or ask the IRS to assign you one.

Step 1

Sign up to e-file your taxes using a free online tax preparation service. The IRS provides a list of free services.

Step 2

Complete your return by providing your personal, employment and income information.

Step 3

Enter "0" for your previous year's adjusted gross income.

Step 4

Select the option that indicates you are a first-time filer. Tax preparation services feature a self-selected PIN method. You create your own five digit PIN using any five-number combination, except all zeros. Since you will keep the same PIN year after year, select a set of numbers that is easy for you to remember. There is no need to register the PIN with the IRS or call to confirm it is active.

Step 5

Enter your new PIN in the “Electronic Filing PIN” field to verify your identity and sign electronically.


About the Author

Jeannine Mancini, a Florida native, has been writing business and personal finance articles since 2003. Her articles have been published in the Florida Today and Orlando Sentinel. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Central Florida.

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