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Applying for FIRE Transmitter Control Code (TCC)

Eric Updated by Eric

A FIRE Transmitter Control Code (TCC) is required to e-file 1099’s (and certain other information returns) to the IRS. You must electronically apply for a FIRE TCC through the IR Application described in this article.

This article is about the FIRE system. CFS also supports CSV file uploads to the new IRIS system, but continues to recommend the FIRE system. See Differences between e-filing with FIRE and IRIS.

Prior to getting started

Be sure to apply for your FIRE TCC well in advance of 1099 filing due dates. The IRS advises to allow at least 45 days for them to process your IR Application. Often the process is quicker but this cannot be guaranteed.
  • CFS is not a third-party transmitter. CFS does not file the W-2/1099s; you do. CFS creates the file which you will be able to upload to the IRS FIRE System.
  • Existing FIRE TCC holders who didn't complete the IR Application (to keep their current TCC) by August 1, 2023 now have an expired TCC. A new TCC must be applied for using the procedure in this article.
  • The IRS encourages transmitters who file for multiple issuers (clients, issuers of 1099's), to submit one application and use the assigned FIRE TCC for all issuers. The purpose of the FIRE TCC is to identify the transmitter of the file. You may transmit files for as many companies as you need to under the one TCC.
  • Apply under the same name that is associated with your EIN (Form SS-4). On the IR application, add “Responsible Officials” (who will each need to sign up for, and, sign the IR Application with their own 5- digit PIN). Also on the IR application, add “Contacts” (who can each create a FIRE account on the IRS FIRE System website to E-file Information Returns using their firm’s TCC, EIN and Legal Business Name, should you choose to share this information with them).
  • Sole Proprietors - You must have an EIN to apply for a FIRE (or IRIS) TCC code.
If you have any questions, call the IRS FIRE System phone number at (866) 455-7438. Click here for additional information.

Applying for a FIRE TCC

  1. Go to IR Application for TCC.
    1. Log-in with your user email and password. 
    2. If you do not yet have an account, you will have to create one first.
      The Create a new account option is for a new account—not a new IR application.
      Note that technical difficulties are not uncommon when creating an account. If you have phone camera difficulties under "Self-Service," choosing Video Chat Agent" is an option. Help links can also be found at the Help Center.
  2. Click Individual. The External Services Authorization Management webpage will open.
  3. Click New Application then click IR Application for TCC FIRE.
  4. Fill out the form and click Continue.
    As you continue through Application Screens, you will add information regarding your Responsible Officials and Contacts. If you are a Sole Proprietor/Individual, only one Responsible Official and Contact are essential, whereas at least two are required for other Business Entities. If Two are required, you will add Responsible Officials (which will each sign the application with their own 5-digit PIN. All Responsible Officials (and also Authorized Delegates, should you choose to add them), will need an See Adding additional Responsible Officials to a TCC application.
    Take note of the EXACT Firm/Organization Legal Name. It must be the same as that which is associated with your EIN, and can ONLY include the following punctuation/symbols: ampersand (&), period(s), dash(-), and comma(s). 
    Some applicants omit periods and commas associated with their EIN since they are not required on the IR application. However the Firm/Organization Legal Name as it appears on your IR application is how it must be input when later registering and signing on to the IRS FIRE System. EXCEPTION: If the IRS changes punctuation when assigning the TCC, use the legal business name as stated on your FIRE TCC assignment letter.
  1. Select the types of form(s) you will be submitting. Note that 1099’s are included in the first checkbox selection. Click ADD to select whether you are a Transmitter or an Issuer. Then click Continue.
    The Tax Practitioners e-filing for Clients will choose Transmitter (and will still be able to e-file for their own company under the Transmitter option)
  2. Click ADD to add Responsible Officials. As you continue through the IR application screens, you will also add Contacts.
    Sole proprietors/individuals: only one Responsible Official and Contact are essential

    Other business entities: two are required. Each will also need to sign the application with their own 5 digit PIN and register with See Adding additional Responsible Officials to a TCC application.
  3. Add any application comments and click Continue.
  4. Review the Application Summary and click Continue if it is correct.
    In the next step, you will be submitting your completed application. First verify that the Business Entity selection on the first page of your application is correct; it cannot be changed once submitted.
  5. Check I accept the terms of agreement, input your PIN, and click Submit.
    If you do not know your PIN, click Modify PIN on the IR application to get a new PIN.
  6. After you have signed and submitted the application, it is not complete until any other Responsible Officials also sign it with their own 5-digit PIN. Log out before they attempt to add their signatures. Retain a record of your 5-digit PIN in case it is needed for future applications or modifications (or IRS help). The IRS has to accept your submission before it is considered complete.
    For assistance in completing or PIN signing your IR application, call the FIRE System technical help line at 866-455-7438.
  7. An approval letter will be sent but you can find your TCC online before the letter arrives, sometimes in as little as a few days after submission. See Finding your TCC.
    IR Application is subject to review before the approval to transmit electronically is granted and may require additional documentation at the request of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
  8. See What to do when you receive your FIRE TCC.
Unlike 941 e-filing, a test submission is not required by the FIRE System before e-filing 1099’s.

FIRE System Phone Support

FIRE System Phone Support is called their “TSO line”.

Listen to all options before making your selection.

  • Hours: Monday through Friday, 8:30A to 5:30P ET.
  • 866-455-7438 (toll-free) this is the regular fire number
  • 304-263-8700 (International) (Not toll-free)
  • 304-579-4827 for Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) (Not toll-free)

How did we do?

Adding Responsible Officials to a TCC application

Applying for IRIS Transmitter Control Code (TCC)