Form 1040 is not considered a valid return unless you sign it. If you are filing a joint return, your spouse must also sign. If your spouse cannot sign the return, see Pub. 501. Be sure to date your return and enter your occupation(s). If you have someone prepare your return, you are still responsible for the correctness of the return. If your return is signed by a representative for you, you must have a power of attorney attached that specifically authorizes the representative to sign your return. To do this, you can use Form 2848. If you are filing a joint return as a surviving spouse, see Death of a Taxpayer on page 91.taxmap/instr/i1040gi-020.htm#TXMP4ebc4ee5
If your child cannot sign the return, either parent can sign the child's name in the space provided. Then, enter taxmap/instr/i1040gi-020.htm#TXMP17ae6c4e
By (your signature), parent for minor child.
Providing your daytime phone number may help speed the processing of your return. We may have questions about items on your return, such as the earned income credit, credit for child and dependent care expenses, etc. If you answer our questions over the phone, we may be able to continue processing your return without mailing you a letter. If you are filing a joint return, you can enter either your or your spouse's daytime phone number.taxmap/instr/i1040gi-020.htm#TXMP5a5d1e8e
Generally, anyone you pay to prepare your return must sign it in the space provided. The preparer must give you a copy of the return for your records. Someone who prepares your return but does not charge you should not sign your return.taxmap/instr/i1040gi-020.htm#TXMP1aa432bc
To file your return electronically, you must sign the return electronically using a personal identification number (PIN). If you are filing online using software, you must use a Self-Select PIN. If you are filing electronically using a tax practitioner, you can use a Self-Select PIN or a Practitioner PIN.taxmap/instr/i1040gi-020.htm#TXMP42c6db93
The Self-Select PIN method allows you to create your own PIN. If you are married filing jointly, you and your spouse will each need to create a PIN and enter these PINs as your electronic signatures.
A PIN is any combination of five digits you choose except five zeros. If you use a PIN, there is nothing to sign and nothing to mail—not even your Forms W-2.
To verify your identity, you will be prompted to enter your adjusted gross income (AGI) from your originally filed 2008 federal income tax return, if applicable. Do not use your AGI from an amended return (Form 1040X) or a math error correction made by IRS. AGI is the amount shown on your 2008 Form 1040, line 38; Form 1040A, line 22; or Form 1040EZ, line 4. If you do not have your 2008 income tax return, call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 to get a free transcript of your return. (If you filed electronically last year, you may use your prior year PIN to verify your identity instead of your prior year AGI. The prior year PIN is the five digit PIN you used to electronically sign your 2008 return.) You will also be prompted to enter your date of birth (DOB). Make sure your DOB is accurate and matches the information on record with the Social Security Administration by checking your annual social security statement.
You cannot use the Self-Select PIN method if you are a first-time filer under age 16 at the end of 2009.
The Practitioner PIN method allows you to authorize your tax practitioner to enter or generate your PIN. The practitioner can provide you with details.taxmap/instr/i1040gi-020.htm#TXMP348ae0ca
You must send in a paper Form 8453 if you are attaching or filing Form 1098-C, 2848 (for an electronic return signed by an agent), 3115, 3468 (if attachments are required), 4136 (if certificate or statement required), 5713, 8283 (if a statement is required for Section A or if Section B is completed), 8332 (or certain pages from a divorce decree or separation agreement that went into effect after 1984 and before 2009), 8858, 8864 (if certification or statement required), 8885, Schedule D-1 (Form 1040) (if you elect not to include your transactions on the electronic STCGL or LTCGL records), or Appendix A (statement by taxpayer using the procedures in Rev. Proc. 2009-20 to determine a theft loss deduction related to a fraudulent investment arrangement). This revenue procedure is found on page 749 of Internal Revenue Bulletin 2009-14 at www.irs.gov/irb/2009-14_IRB/ar11.html