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Letter 5071 C

Return Processing Stopped, Notice Issued

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Letter Overview

The 5071C, Potential Identity Theft During Original Processing with Online Option, letter is mailed to taxpayers to notify them that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) received an income tax return using your name, Social Security number (SSN) or individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN).

This notice or letter may include additional topics that have not yet been covered here. Please check back frequently for updates.

What does this mean to me?

To protect you from identity theft, we need to verify your identity before we process the income tax return, issue a refund, or apply the overpayment to next year’s estimated tax.

How did I get here?

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) received an income tax return using your name, Social Security number (SSN) or individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN).

What are my next steps?

The first thing to do is to check the return address to be sure it’s from the Internal Revenue Service and not another agency.

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If you didn’t file

Call IRS immediately as you may be a victim of tax-related identity theft.

If you filed: Call the IRS Identity Verification number on your letter. Contact can be made online or by phone to verify your identity and tax return information.

Online

Use  the IRS’s secure Identity Verification Service. It’s quick, secure, and available 24 hours a day.

Have a copy of the 5071C letter you received and a copy of the tax return for the tax year shown in the letter.

By phone

Call the toll-free IRS Identity Verification telephone number in the 5071C letter within 30days from the date of this letter.

The toll-free number IRS Identity Verification number is for Identity Verification only. No other tax-related information, including refund status, is available.  

Once you have successfully verified your identity, it may take up to 9 weeks for you to receive your refund or apply the overpayment to next year’s estimated tax. However, if there are other issues, you may receive a notice asking for more information, and this may delay your refund.

If the IRS can’t verify your identity over the phone, they may ask you to schedule an appointment at your local IRS office to verify your identity in person. You will need to bring the documents listed above. You can make an appointment by calling toll free 1-844-595-5640.


Have the following available when you call: 

  • The 5071C letter
  • The income tax return referenced in the letter (Form 1040, 1040A, 1040-EZ, 1040-PR, 1040-NR, etc.). Note: A Form W-2 or Form 1099 is not a tax return.
  • A previous year’s income tax return, other than the year in the letter (Form 1040, 1040A, 1040-EZ, 1040-PR, 1040-NR, etc.). Note: A Form W-2 or Form 1099 is not a tax return.
  • Supporting documents that you filed with each year’s income tax return (Form W-2 or Form 1099, Schedules C or F, etc.).

Note: Authorized third parties may assist taxpayers, but the taxpayer must be present on the phone or in-person. 

Where can I get additional help?

Understanding your notice or letter

Get Help topics

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If you still need help

The Taxpayer Advocate Service is an independent organization within the IRS that helps taxpayers and protects taxpayers’ rights. We can offer you help if your tax problem is causing a financial difficulty, you’ve tried and been unable to resolve your issue with the IRS, or you believe an IRS system, process, or procedure just isn’t working as it should. If you qualify for our assistance, which is always free, we will do everything possible to help you.

Visit www.taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov or call 1-877-777-4778.

Low Income Taxpayer Clinics (LITCs) are independent from the IRS and TAS. LITCs represent individuals whose income is below a certain level and who need to resolve tax problems with the IRS. LITCs can represent taxpayers in audits, appeals, and tax collection disputes before the IRS and in court. In addition, LITCs can provide information about taxpayer rights and responsibilities in different languages for individuals who speak English as a second language. Services are offered for free or a small fee. For more information or to find an LITC near you, see the LITC page on the TAS website or Publication 4134, Low Income Taxpayer Clinic List.

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Where am I in the tax system?

Return Processing Stopped, Notice Issued Letter 5071C