Does the DOR have plans to allow for PDF attachments or some other enhancement to current e-filing procedures so e-filing can be more efficient for practitioners?
Accounting firms still find that some aspects of e-filing PA tax returns are more burdensome than filing paper returns, especially in today’s “paperless” environment. Examples include the requirement to separately mail or fax to the PA DOR 1) federal Form 1116 (foreign taxes) and 2) other state tax returns (other state taxes) when the taxpayer claims a credit for the taxes on an e-filed Form PA-40. If these forms are not mailed, the PA DOR generally sends out correspondence to the taxpayer requesting them, which has negative repercussions on the accountant’s relationship with the taxpayer client.
Does the PA DOR have plans to allow for PDF attachments (of Form 1116 and the other state tax returns) or some other enhancement to current e-filing procedures so e-filing can be more efficient for practitioners? If so, when will such changes be in place?
The Department is currently in the process of converting over to the IRS’s new MeF, Modernized e-File, platform. The MeF platform will permit preparers to attach pdf files of items such as other state returns and federal Form 1116 for verifying resident credit as well any other documents that are currently required to be faxed to the department. The Department began accepting MeF based returns for tax-year 2010 in January of 2011. However, only one software vendor supported MeF returns. The Department expects more software vendors to participate using the MeF platform this coming tax season. However, software vendors are not required to participate until tax-year 2012 during the 2013 filing season. The department suggests preparers check with their own software vendor to determine when they will convert to the MeF platform.