Posts Tagged ‘FIRE’

FAQs About Information Returns

September 30th, 2010 No comments

What is an information return?

Information returns are documents with tax or other information that are required to be filed with the IRS. They are intended to report specific business transactions. Information returns are not considered to be tax returns and they are used for informational purposes alone.

Who must file information returns?

Any business, corporation, individual, estate, or other organization that takes part in a reportable transaction during the calender year must file an appropriate information return. In most cases, statements must also be sent to the other parties involved in the transaction. Those who are filing more than 250 information returns are required to file them electronically, although lower numbers of information returns are also more convenient to file electronically.

Which transactions are reportable?

The IRS lists 120 transactions that are reportable, and the list is by no means complete. If a transaction is not listed on the IRS’s website it does not mean that the transaction does not need to be reported.

The minimum amount of the transaction which necessitates reporting depends on the type of transaction and is determined by the IRS.

How do you file information returns?

Information returns can be filed in paper form by mailing the form to the appropriate address as directed by the form. There are also some information returns that can be filed with magnetic media. Forms 1099, 1098, 1042-S, 3921, 3922, 5498, W-2 and W-2G and others can be filed electronically via FIRE software (File Information Returns Electronically) with an internet connection.

Our website provides software for these and other information returns and you can file them electronically through our site as well. Electronic filing is better for the speed and accuracy of the information return and it is recommended to file electronically over paper filing when possible.

What is the deadline to file information returns?

Although the deadline varies, many information returns have to be provided to those involved in the reportable transaction by January 31st.  The information returns are usually required to be filed to the IRS by February 28, but this deadline varies and the exact date for the particular information return can be found on the form itself.

What if I need more time?

If you need more time, the IRS offers the option of applying for an extension with Form 8809. You are automatically approved and granted 30 more days to send your information returns to the IRS.

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