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A woman diligently works at her desk, her left hand poised over the laptop keyboard and her right hand firmly holding down a stack of papers, symbolizing the transition from paper-based tax filing to electronic filing.

Embracing Change: IRS Mandates Electronic Filing for Information Returns in 2024

In a significant move to streamline tax processes and enhance compliance, the IRS has revised its regulations, mandating electronic filing for information returns. Formerly applicable to businesses with more than 250 returns, this requirement has now been tightened to include those with 10 or more returns. Effective January 1, 2024, these changes will reshape how businesses handle their information returns, necessitating a strategic approach to compliance.

Embracing the Digital Era of Tax Compliance

For small businesses accustomed to paper filings due to the previous 250-return threshold, the new regulations will usher in a digital era. All types of information returns, previously assessed separately, will now be combined when determining the filing obligation. This shift requires affected employers to proactively adapt, implementing new software, policies, and procedures well in advance to meet the impending changes.

Understanding the Scope of Electronic Filing

The electronic filing mandate extends beyond information returns, encompassing partnership returns, corporate income tax returns, unrelated business income tax returns, and more. Notably, employment tax returns (Forms 940 and 941) are exempt from this mandate. Larger partnerships, defined as those with over 100 partners, must file their information returns electronically, irrespective of the number.

Penalties for Non-Compliance

Penalties loom for non-compliance, with IRC Section 6721 stipulating fines for failing to e-file when required. The potential penalty in 2024 is up to $310 per information return, with an annual maximum of $3,783,000. Waivers are available for businesses facing undue hardship, and the IRS has introduced the Information Returns Intake System (IRIS), an online portal facilitating electronic filing.

Benefits of Electronic Filing

Even if not compelled by the new rules, the benefits of electronic filing—efficiency, accuracy, and improved record retention—make it a compelling option. Electronic filing offers numerous advantages, including:

  • Reduced Paperwork and Storage Costs: Electronic filing eliminates the need for paper forms, saving businesses money on printing, postage, and storage costs.
  • Improved Accuracy and Reduced Errors: Electronic filing software helps to minimize errors and ensure that information is accurately reported.
  • Enhanced Efficiency and Time Savings: Electronic filing streamlines the tax filing process, saving businesses time and effort.
  • Streamlined Record Retention: Electronic records are easily retrievable and organized, making it simpler for businesses to manage their tax documents.

Preparing for the E-File Mandate

In navigating this complex landscape, businesses are urged to evaluate their readiness for the 2024 changes. Here are some key steps to consider:

  1. Assess E-File Requirements: Determine the number and types of information returns your business is required to file electronically.
  2. Choose an E-File Solution: Select an electronic filing software or service provider that meets your specific needs and budget.
  3. Implement New Procedures: Establish new internal procedures to ensure timely and accurate electronic filing.
  4. Educate Employees: Train employees on the new electronic filing procedures and software.
  5. Test and Validate: Conduct thorough testing to ensure your electronic filing system is functioning properly.


The transition to electronic filing may seem daunting, but with careful planning and preparation, businesses can reap the numerous benefits of this digital approach to tax compliance. By embracing e-filing, businesses can streamline their tax processes, enhance accuracy, and save valuable time and resources.

JS Morlu LLC is a top-tier accounting firm based in Woodbridge, Virginia, with a team of highly experienced and qualified CPAs and business advisors. We are dedicated to providing comprehensive accounting, tax, and business advisory services to clients throughout the Washington, D.C. Metro Area and the surrounding regions. With over a decade of experience, we have cultivated a deep understanding of our clients’ needs and aspirations. We recognize that our clients seek more than just value-added accounting services; they seek a trusted partner who can guide them towards achieving their business goals and personal financial well-being.
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